By Yaromil Fong-Olivares
This little post started as a personal resolutions list. I don’t usually have new year’s resolutions because my birthday is so close to the new year and I usually make my yearly plans then. I decided to have a little fun this year, this being a landmark birthday and all and made my resolutions all grown up. They came out so nifty I thought I would share.
The top new year’s resolutions according to many intelligent people writing blogs and articles on and off line are:
- Lose weight
- Get fit
- Quit smoking
- Eat healthier
- Learn something new
- Spend more time with the family
- Enjoy life to the fullest
50 percent of people fail within the first 2 to 6 weeks. If only they were having lots of sex they would burn more calories, sleep better, boost immunity and self-esteem, and improve heart health. Don’t believe me? Just visit WebMD’s 10 Surprising Health Benefits of Sex.
Resolution #1 Have more sex.
Areas tackled: weight loss, fitness, smoking cessation, stress, enjoy life, learn something new (*wink).
When I invite women to come train with me at Brownstone Fitness the most common hesitation I hear is “I don’t want to bulk up”. If I had a penny for every time I heard that. It is practically impossible for a woman to magically and unexpectedly “bulk up” without her consent. I know, because I am trying. Ever since I began serious weight training I have gained about 5 pounds of muscle and look slimmer than I did a year ago. My new pounds are nicely distributed around my glutes, arms and legs. My belly is shrinking and I have definitely lost inches around my waist. How? I lift weights like I am training for doomsday and wear a mini dress like a pro. I will continue to push my muscles via stregth and resistance training, but I can't erase my genetics, my body type, and my eating habits. So unless you are the love child of the Incredible Hulk stop worrying about bulking up if what you want is to lose fat. Instead, start pushing your muscles to work beyond capacity to kick fat's ass. Give it 6 months and watch what happens to your lovely body.
Resolution #2 Gain (lean body) weight.
Areas tackled: fitness, smoking cessation, stress, learn something new.
I know you are tired of watching your paycheck go directly to your credit card providers. It’s like there’s no such thing as cash any more. Modern life is expensive. We want what we want and we want it now. So I suggest 3 things for this. First, pay with cash only. When you do this you’ll feel the loss more. For some reason credit cards don’t feel like "real" spending to folks and cold hard cash does. Secondly, put your money away in an account that’s not easily accessible. Try ING Direct, where you have to wait at least a week to get your cash. Finally, every time you have the urge to make an impulse buy ask yourself this: “do I really need this crap?”. If you do, then by all means charge that baby. If you don’t then put the amount equal to the cost of the item toward your credit card debt. This will help you feel the high of purchasing something (i.e. spending the money) without having to actually spend the money on silly stuff that’s going to sit around your apartment unused anyhow.
Resolution #3 Stop spending money on bullshit I don’t need. Spend money on paying off my debt.
Areas tackled: stress, discipline, learn something new, smoking!
I live in what feels like the biggest junk food trap of all, New York City. Between the fast food restaurants, the corner carts, and the kids selling candy bars in the train, it’s a miracle we don’t all weight 1000 pounds. Luckily there is a way. I call it the KISS nutrition plan. Yes, you've heard it before, KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID. If you are trying to eat healthier start with the basics. protein, vegetables, and healthy fats. Now I’ll admit to my bias in favor of the paleo plan. You don’t have to call it that per se, in fact most people have tried some mutant variation of paleo as a quick fix diet, namely folks love the carb-free diet. Unfortunately, that’s not sustainable because it usually gets boring and you usually get hungry. When thinking about vegetables for muscle gain consider eating more potatoes, yams, plantains and root vegetables such as yucca. Skip the bread, yes whole wheat included, the sugar, and the seed oils. You are what you eat right? Well then think about it, when was the last time you saw a saggy yucca or potato? I can't say the same thing for jell-o or pudding or bread.
Now that you got the “keep it simple” part, let’s move to the stupid part. Why not instead of going gently into the good light of a supermarket you try and visit your local farmers’ markets and shops and befriend those daring people. Ask them questions about the meat you are buying, what, if any, hormones are used, what fruits and vegetables are in season, what’s the difference between grass-fed and organic? Stuff like that will motivate you to avoid certain foods, I would tell you why but I don’t want to spoil your fun.
Resolution #4 Start by visiting my Primary Care Provider and getting a blood test to check for any deficiencies in vitamins and mineral and any health issues that I should know about. Choose vitamins and minerals that supplement my personal needs NOT catch-all supplements. Eat 3 full meals a day (no snacks) according to my own KISS nutrition plan (based on blood test results) and include organic meats, eggs, cheese, rice, potatoes and veggies from local farmers’ markets and locally owned shops.
Areas tackled: fitness, healthy eating, stress, smoking cessation, enjoy life, learn something new.
Speaking of learning something new, how about these crazy ideas:
Learn how to combine my eating regimen with my exercise plan for maximum fat loss and muscle gain, learn more about local farmers, learn about individualized nutrition, learn how to make meals that are both healthy and delicious, learn to take more risks in the kitchen, learn to make time in my schedule to exercise, learn how to exercise on my own, learn how to exercise with my lover, learn how to make exercise fun, , learn how to make myself maintain long term commitments to things I already tried before and gave up because of some lame excuse like not enough time.
Resolution #5 Learn something new.
Areas tackled: learning, enjoy life more, stress, fitness, smoking cessation.
Oh and last but not least…my favorite one of all.
Resolution #6 Spend more time with my family without looking at my phone every 5 minutes. That includes work emails, social media networks, twitter, etc.
Areas tackled: stress, family time, enjoy life more, smoking cessation.
How about in 2012 we do stuff as a family like rock climbing, walking in the park, cooking (important life skill), exercise videos, volunteer, talk, get to know each other… Please take the chore-like feeling away from spending time with the family. It’s not nice.
The moral of the story is that all these resolutions are interrelated. And that’s a great thing because when you realize that, all of them become easier to achieve. It’s your desire (and mine) to have a healthy, happy life and since you are a good person you wish the same for the ones you love. Make it happen by doing more and resolutioning less. Resourcefulness, a commitment to adventure, making it a family effort and a willingness to try new things might be all you need to finally achieve ALL your resolutions beyond the first 30 days. The only downer is that you’ll have to find other resolutions for 2013…say deadlifting 1.5 times your body weight or your 150 pound sister. You choose.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor nor do I play one on TV, the internet, my wildest dreams. Please consult your physician before starting any exercise or diet program. I am a life coach and a Brownstone Fitness personal trainer weighing in at 120 pounds and deadlifting 180 pounds, among other really cool fitness tricks you wouldn’t believe I could do. I am also a student at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in NYC.
ACE Fitness (exercise library online)
Yaromil Fong-Olivares is a life coach and personal power blogger residing in New York City. Contact her for coaching, training, writing, and speaking gigs at firstname.lastname@example.org. To purchase my ebook THE HOLY GRAIL OF LIFE COACHING, click here.