The new year is here, which means it’s time to buckle down and get started on your resolutions. If one of your resolutions was to lose weight or eat a healthier diet, this means setting nutritional goals and sticking to them. As anyone who has ever done it can tell you, changing the way you eat is hard but can be done with a little dedication and a few easy tricks that will help you stick to your plan.
Here’s everything you need to know about setting and maintaining nutritional goals in the new year.
Setting and Maintaining Your New Year’s Nutrition Goals
1. Goal Setting
The first and most important part of changing your nutrition is deciding what your goals are. When doing this, it can be tempting to start looking for prefabricated diet plans claiming to be the ideal solution for everyone. However, it’s important to understand at the outset that the best plan for you is the one you’ll actually stick to and that best fits your goals.
As such, it’s generally best to avoid looking for one-size-fits-all diets. If you pick a diet that isn’t best for your body and your goals, you’ll have a hard time sticking to it and won’t maximize the health benefits of adopting a new diet. If you can’t decide what dietary regimen is right for you, consider talking to your doctor or a certified nutritionist who can make some recommendations that are in line with what you want to achieve.
It’s also important that your goals be both specific and realistic. Non-specific goals have very little value, as you can’t measure progress adequately. For instance, deciding to lose 25 pounds over the year is better than simply resolving to lose weight, since it has a measurable threshold for success.
Unrealistic goals, meanwhile, are tantamount to self-sabotage. Once you set and fail to live up to an unrealistic set of goals, you’ll likely lose your motivation and stop trying to change your habits altogether.
In addition to being somewhat personalized, therefore, your goals should be as specific as possible and reasonably achievable.
2. How To Stick To Your Goals
Plan It Out
Once you’ve decided on a set of goals for yourself, it’s time to put yourself to work on reaching them. Remaining consistent is everything when it comes to weight loss and health in general, so it’s critical that you’re able to maintain your plan over the long haul.
One of the best ways to do this is to set small but important milestones. If your goal is to lose weight, for instance, your first small milestone might be losing three pounds in the first month of the year. Though it’s a small accomplishment, you should actually celebrate it and reward yourself for it, since doing so will give you positive feedback and motivation to continue for the rest of the year.
Hold Yourself Accountable To An Accountability Partner
Another very effective method of maintaining your action toward your goals is to find an accountability partner. An accountability partner is someone with whom you’ve shared your goal and who will check you on a regular basis to make sure that you’re staying on top of it.
If possible, try to find a partner with similar goals to your own so you can help each other. Having an accountability partner introduces a psychological incentive for you to keep up with the goals you’ve set for yourself, as failure to do so will mean actually telling someone else you haven’t done what you said you were going to do. Though it may seem like a small matter, an accountability partner can give you the extra little push you need to stay consistent.
These are just a few of the ways you can set and maintain your goals. Be sure you devote some time to setting your goals. Good goals will keep your motivated, while poorly set goals will ultimately backfire and prevent you from achieving your nutritional and health goals for the year.
Once you’ve come up with a set of well-structured goals, success is just a matter of sticking to them every day and maintaining your progress.
British Solomon is a contributing writer and media specialist for Clean Juice. She regularly produces content for a variety of health and lifestyle blogs.
What helps you stay on track with your nutrition goals?
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