By Nutritionist, Hannah Norris
It’s mid-way through January and you may or may not have made some new year’s resolutions and you may or may not have already broken them…
If you, like the majority of brits who have made a NY resolution to get fitter and do more exercise (53%), my number one top tip is to start gently.
I see it with clients all the time, doing too much all at once. When it comes to exercise, even if you’re a seasoned fitness enthusiast, with a few weeks off over the holiday you want to ease back into your training regime lightly.
Don’t jump into an intense exercise regime straight off the back as you’ll likely have such a sore body that you then can’t train for days after, or worse you’ll get injured!
The second most popular new year's resolution is related to weight loss or eating a better diet. Here are my top tips to help you with your new year's resolutions, be it fitness or health related.
How to stick to New Years Resolutions
Focus on what you can add not remove from the diet
When we increase exercise and aim for weight loss, we typically go too hard too quickly and look to cut calories or food intake to the point it’s not sustainable. Instead of overly restricting your diet, look at what you can improve and add more of to your diet that will support those goals.
Two main things we can look to increase are fibre and protein. Both will help to improve fullness and therefore make eating healthier easier by reducing hunger. Fibre will help improve our gut health and protein will aid the recovery of our increase in exercise.
Protein is not only important for workouts; we need it daily to keep our bodies functioning properly. If you’re ramping up your exercise, you’re at risk of muscle soreness or worse, injury. Increasing your high-quality protein intake, such as Clear Whey Protein Isolate may suppress myofibrillar damage, reduce feelings of muscle soreness and increase muscle recovery.
If you’ve had an alcohol heavy festive period your B vitamins such as folate, thiamin, biotin and B12 could be depleted. B vitamins are crucial for energy metabolism, i.e. giving us energy. Grabbing a drink infused with B vitamins, like Upbeat, is a great way to top up.
Introduce small easy (and realistic) habits that build up to a bigger goal
If eating healthier or doing more exercise is the goal, set yourself smaller goals each week.
For example, the large overall goal is: “Eat healthier” this could be broken down into “eat
more plants, get more protein, reduce sugar intake” and then be broken even further into small steps such as:
Week 1: Eat a portion of fruit and vegetables at each meal
Week 2: Eat a portion of fruit and vegetables at each meal AND cut back on the daily sugary drink and swap for a healthier high protein drink like Upbeat
Week 3: Eat a portion of fruit and vegetables at each meal AND cut back on the daily sugary drink and instead drink an Upbeat AND swap the morning croissant for a high protein option like Greek yoghurt and berries
Before you know it, these small goals will have become day to day habits you don’t have to even think about.
When setting these goals ensure you equip yourself to make it possible
Prepare by buying options you actually enjoy so you are covered for any moment.
Remember if you make yourself drinks, food or snacks that you don’t like then it’s not surprising if you then don’t eat them…
If the goal is to go to the gym more, pick a gym that’s easy and convenient to get to and pack your gym clothes the night before, along with an Upbeat to fuel you right when you need it.
Get enough sleep
One thing to focus on is improving your sleep and this will make any fitness or health goal a hundred times easier.
When we have poor sleep, we have poor appetite control and instead of having energy for exercise we crave sugar, fat and caffeine.
If you do have poor sleep, don’t let this ruin your day, when you’re craving something sweet, grab an Upbeat Protein Energy drink, the protein and B vitamins will reduce energy slumps and help regulate blood sugar levels plus 180mg of caffeine will get you through.
Upbeat protein drinks have two ranges, caffeinated and non-caffeinated. Opt for the Upbeat Protein Energy for morning workouts and a mid-morning boost, and
Upbeat Protein Hydration, the non-caffeinated option, for those late evening
workouts because caffeine stays in the body for several hours and whilst you may not feel it, the caffeine could reduce the quality of sleep you get.
Remember you’re human and cut yourself some slack!
Research shows us when we beat ourselves up about eating a certain food that we label as ‘bad’, we’re more likely to repeat the behaviour and binge on said ‘bad’ food.
Don’t beat yourself up for not hitting every goal, every single day. Instead remember
you’re human, cut yourself some slack and then continue.
If you take a wrong turn when driving, you don’t give up and drive all the way back home do you?