We all know that most New Year’s resolutions begin AND end in January. Often, the reason can be aiming too high, instead of taking realistic steps towards sustainable health.
As skyn ICELAND celebrates its 11th anniversary this month, we’d like to share 11 easy resolutions to make this year your best yet.
Take a hike! If you’re not a daily runner, the prospect of hitting the pavement can feel daunting. Taking in a good nature trail can be a more enjoyable alternative. If you live near any parks with multiple elevation changes; take advantage of them. A good hike can give you the benefits of a full workout, all while just walking and taking in nature.
Set small goals EVERY DAY and exceed them when you can Even a quick 10-minute workout (try jumping-jacks or yoga poses) can improve your health if it’s done everyday. To stay motivated, start with small goals. For instance: aim to run a distance that doesn’t seem overwhelming. You’ll find that once you’re warmed up and already out, it will be easy to push a little more. That provides fulfillment that will motivate you going forward.
Get up off of that thing! Sitting at a computer for hours-on-end is a requirement for most jobs these days. Sitting at a computer for hours-on-end is also supremely unhealthy. Make it a point to get up and stretch for a few minutes within each hour. Take the flight of steps up one or two floors instead of the elevator. Just make sure to have some body movement. Being stagnant all day will reduce your metabolism and make you feel sluggish.
And dance until you feel better! Don’t be a wallflower on your nights out. Get out there and work the floor. You’ll be getting in a great workout that mitigates the calories of your drinks, and you’ll be enjoying yourself while you do!
Nix your mixers While enjoying the aforementioned night out, it’s tempting to order complex cocktails or craft beers. Unfortunately though, those are packed with liquid calories. A good way to cut cocktail calories is to order a clear liquor (Gin, Vodka) neat, or on the rocks. At the least, replace craft beer with a light beer. If you’re not a fan of straight liquor, order a simple cocktail of vodka, club soda, and a lemon or juice. The club soda will take up a lot of space in the glass that would otherwise be occupied by sugary juice and Syrups.
DJ mix Speaking of dancing and mixers… A pro DJ mix can be the fix you need to keep moving during your workouts, as it blends song-to-song with matching tempos and no dropout. Whether it’s your favorite DJ, or a DJ mixed compilation (such as the popular Ministry of Sound series), you can find a mix of your favorite genres that will keep you motivated. Of course making your own mix of your favorite inspiring songs can work just as well!
Volunteer With work and family obligations, not everyone has the free time to volunteer. However, squeezing in an hour when you can to help a local charity can do a lot of good. In addition to helping your community, it’s a great step towards good mental health. After a day of affirmative experiences, you’ll find it hard to leave without a smile. Many activities, like a group beach cleanup, can also be a good light workout in a pleasant setting.
Pro Tip: Volunteering can also be a great way for singles (or anyone!) to meet other positive-minded people.
Fruit instead of candy Fruit is not chocolate. Indeed nothing besides chocolate is chocolate. Chocolate is irreplaceable… However, fruit is a great substitute for fruit candy. While everyone loves a red Starburst, it’s only a superficial attempt at capturing the juicy sweetness of fresh fruit. So next time you’re in line at the store, avoid the impulse-buy, and circle back to the produce section to satisfy your sweet-tooth.
Lemon water Lemon water is delicious. Lemon water is refreshing. Lemon water is zero calories.
Potato wedges If you’ve gotten used to potato chips, switching to something like kale chips is much too depressing of an alternative. Lean potato wedges will fulfill that same craving. And in addition to containing less saturated fat and sodium, their size and hardiness make them easier to portion control than a bottomless bag of chips.
Play sport Everyone dreads the gym at some point. A great way to fight the monotony is to join a local sports league (try the YMCA or local community centers in your area) or find a partner for tennis. The best part is that you won’t be focused on the grind when your mind is occupied with the game. Also the social aspect of camaraderie, teamwork and competition is a great reason to keep going back!