7 tips to keep up your New Year’s resolutions

Lisa Reed, special to wtop.com

WASHINGTON – New Years was seven weeks ago. Have you kept your resolutions?

Very few people who make New Year’s resolutions actually keep them. By the time February rolls around, people lack motivation or just lose interest. But there are ways to finish what you started.

Here are seven reasons why people tend to slip on their New Year’s resolutions and tips to keep them going past February.

Reason 1: You try to do it by yourself

Solution: You need a support buddy to keep you accountable. Surround yourself with people who inspire you to do more and be better. Remember, your buddy should be a positive force in your life, not a negative one. Stay away from people who drain you mentally and emotionally.

Reason 2: Your goal is too big or unrealistic

Solution: Make small, realistic goals that you can accomplish day by day. Embrace the present and what can you do to make a difference in the here and now. If you think you will lose 100 pounds in three months, this is not going to happen. You need to set a goal that is actually achievable in the time frame you set for yourself. It is far better to succeed at a smaller, more manageable goal than fail at a larger one.

Reason 3: Time management

A recent study at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign suggested that people who thought they were too busy to exercise really did have the time but chose not to make it a priority.

Solution: Break up excise into manageable increments. Try exercising at lunch time or devote seven minutes every morning. Everyone can spare seven minutes a day. Check out my Reed-iculoulsy Fit in 7 Minutes DVD.

Reason 4: You don’t’ have a plan

Solution: The best resolutions are those that actually include a plan of action. Make a calendar with something to do every day that will get you closer to your desired result.

Reason 5: Not taking care of yourself

Whether you come down with the flu or you are too sore or stiff to work out, you can avoid this by preparing ahead of time.

Solution: Eat foods rich in zinc to fight off colds, take omegas and a multivitamin with vitamin C and drink tea. If you have stiff joints or feel sore after exercising, try Biocell Collagen instead of taking analgesics like acetaminophen, ibuprofen or Aspirin. Biocell Collagen has been clinically researched and shown to improve joint health.

Reason 6: You give up

In January, you are all excited about your resolutions, and by February you give up because you let other priorities creep in.

Solution: Keep yourself on track and use the power of positive reinforcement to keep going! If you need encouragement, follow my tweets at @lisareedfitness.

Reason 7: Wrong perspective

While you may have the best intentions with your resolution, you could be putting unnecessary pressure on yourself.

Solution: Quit dwelling on what you have not accomplished and focus on what you will accomplish instead. As author Elbert Hubbard said, “The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.”

So believe in yourself! Congratulate yourself for your progress and efforts toward your goal. Stop the all-or-nothing approach. There is a grey area and that is OK. Stop beating yourself up over a goal not met, or a day without exercise or the cupcake eaten for someone’s birthday.

Just like you offer kindness and praise to friends, speak to yourself the same way.

Lisa Reed is a certified personal trainer in the D.C. area and owner of Lisa Reed Fitness. Read more about Lisa at www.lisareedfitness.com. Follow @lisareedfitness and @WTOPLiving on Twitter.

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