It has begun, a new year filled with endless opportunities is here! It's now up to us to embrace change and new opportunities with our arms wide open or closed. I challenge you to choose the first option.
Here are some strategies to help you when making changes this year:
1. Change your thought processes to highlight small changes:
The key thing to realize is that every step you take and every move you make COUNTS! Activity can be accumulated via many small bouts.
|Here are some examples of small changes to your behaviours that over time will make a significant impact to your health!|
|If watching TV or at the computer, take breaks to do push ups (my fav), squats, lunges, walk around and or stretch|
|Park in the furthest spot possible|
|Get off the bus a couple stops early|
|When shopping, walk a couple extra laps of the mall or grocery store just for fun!|
|At your desk, tap your toes, tighten your tummy or bum alternatively for 20-30 seconds every few minutes. This activates your muscles!|
People who drive manual cars burn 5 extra pounds of fat a year compared to automatic drivers.
2. Set SMART Goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, & Time Oriented) and bring them to life!
These goals provide a framework for success and are easily evaluated. Please view the PAL Fact Sheet in the resources provided to learn how to set goals.
|To bring a goal to life, I follow 3 simple steps:|
|1. Think Critically|
|2. Write goals down|
|3. Share goals with a partner and ask them for support|
3. Find Support
Peer and social support is an essential and well proven mechanism to assist individuals with behaviour change. If you don't have a friend or family member to share your goals with you, you can call the Physical Activity Line (1-877-725-1149) or the Patient Voices Network Peer coaching program (1-888-742-1772) for FREE support! In addition, online communities/networks, like the Healthy Families BC community, are great ways to keep informed and share thoughts.
4. Reward Yourself!
It's important for us to celebrate our accomplishments. We should also reflect on the changes we've been able to make and purposely celebrate them with friends and family. This helps to increase commitment, self confidence and self efficacy!
This is just the tip of the iceberg and I will surely be sharing more strategies in the time to come!
Here are some resources to keep you going:
PAL Fact Sheet: Goal Setting
PAL Fact Sheet: Health Promotion Strategies
PAL Fact Sheet: How to Stay Active
Keep Positive, Keep Smiling, and Keep Moving!