As the new year approaches, you may be thinking about setting some healthy goals for yourself. Research shows that only 9 percent of those who set New Year’s resolutions last year achieved them. So what’s the key to success? A few members offer their tips.
Please note that the following tips from members do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Blue Cross and Blue Shield. These tips are intended as general information only. Please consult your physician for specific advice.
One of the ways I stick to my health goals is meal prepping healthy lunches and dinners for the week. I like to keep it simple. I do a lean protein (chicken, turkey, fish), a green vegetable (steamed broccoli, asparagus, green beans) and a carb (brown rice or sweet potatoes).
I cook everything on Sunday, portion everything out in microwave-safe containers, and neatly pack it in my fridge. It helps me stick to my healthy eating goals and relieves the stress of coming home after a long day of work and wondering what to make for dinner. I just pop it in the microwave and it’s ready to eat in less than two minutes!
— Jordyn F.
I recommend sparkpeople.com. This is an excellent free weight loss site. It offers easy setup, great tracking tools and recipes. The site has other health information and group forums as well.
— Steve S.
At 52, I’ve had success with losing weight by eating healthy and exercising regularly. I have never “dieted” or done meal replacement drinks. (I have hypoglycemia, so skipping meals is not an option for me.)
The trick has been to understand and make peace with the fact that I had to embrace a new lifestyle. Losing weight has become harder as I have aged. I need to eat healthy and exercise regularly for the rest of my life, or the weight will come back.
I’ve also designed a food and exercise program that is realistic and attainable for me. I track my progress daily on a calendar. I exercise at least four days a week and try for six. I walk 3 to 4 miles about every other day. On the other days, I do different types of exercise. This may include strength training, swimming, yard work or even stacking wood (we heat with cord wood). I am working up my stamina to ride a bike with my teenage son.
I have recently starting using Samsung Health to track my food intake and exercise, which makes calorie counting VERY easy. I eat between 1,200 and 1,300 calories a day. My goal is to eat a balance of the food groups: limited meats, whole grains, fresh veggies and fruit, limited sweets, alcohol, and junk food.
I have lost 16 pounds and maintained that for three years. I am hoping to lose another 8 pounds this year, which is realistic, I think.
— Alice V.
Sources: New Year’s Resolution Statistics, Statistic Brain Research Institute, 2017; Healthy Weight, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2017; Getting Started with Physical Activity for a Healthy Weight, CDC, 2015; Healthy Eating for a Healthy Weight, CDC, 2016; Making Lifestyle Changes that Last, American Psychological Association; The Trick to Real and Lasting Lifestyle Changes, Harvard Health Publications