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New Year, New You!

New Year…New You?

It is around this time every year that our television and general media become saturated with New Year’s Resolutions related articles. They tell us to be thinner, fitter, stronger, more mindful, eco-friendly…I could go on but I imagine that you get the picture. Most Januarys I embark upon a new craft or hobby that will inevitably begin to gather dust by the end of the month. Gyms become brimming with over enthused new members in matching gym ensembles.

As cynical as I am about the whole debacle, admittedly, there is an ounce of anticipation. I can’t help but become drawn to the positivity and challenge. But how do we resolve to commitments that are actually achievable? It is like a crash diet, initially, there are swift results yet inevitable failure (they are called CRASH for a reason) often leads to further weight gain alongside sentiments of hopelessness. However, upon studying the benefits of long-term healthy eating goals – where there is room for slip ups and cheat days without the entire premise of the diet is being compromised by one bad day.

With this idea in mind, I doctored some typical resolutions and made them more approachable:

  1. Drink two litres of water a day.

For the past five years, I have trotted this resolution out and I am yet to succeed. However, I have decided to amend the rules to drink a glass or bottle of water alongside every meal and before every caffeinated beverage: can of diet coke = a bottle of water. This, somehow, feels more achievable.

  1. Go to the gym three times a week.

I can’t lie: January is the absolute WORST for the gym (see introductory paragraph regarding those gym people). Instead, I’ve signed up for a half marathon in early May; this has provided ample motivation to get outside, bundle up, and run. For those of us who are afflicted by SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), it actually really helps to get outside and enjoy what little daylight there is – plus our hours of sunlight are getting longer and it will soon be Spring! Do it today: sign up for a run/walk that will motivate you to train.

  1. Cook creatively.

I am unprepared to disclose how long I actually spend browsing the internet and Pinterest for recipes however, I can probably count on two hands how many new recipes I actually cooked in 2018. My new strategy is to commit to cook one new thing per week – or, stop dedicating too much time to browsing on the internet. Imagine going shopping every day yet never actually buying anything?

  1. Be more selfish.

We are all guilty of spreading ourselves too thinly; between work, school, family commitments, and social events. This year, I resolve to be more selfish and put myself first. There is often little time left for self-indulgence yet this is imperative for well-being. Fortunately for my bank account, my concept of indulgence mainly involves time alone: thirty minutes of undisturbed reading or a long run. Find something that makes you happy and increases your wellbeing then schedule it into your week.

  1. Don’t be a QUITTER

Often, resolutions can be based around a negative quality; this year, I am moving away from giving things up or cutting back. Rather than swearing to never touch a piece of cake again (an obvious lie), I’m going to focus on a more positive goal like eating more whole foods and attempting to consume five-a- day.


Samantha Copeland