Setting manageable health targets

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IT happened before and it’s going to happen again, another new year, a significant calendar change motivating many of us to pursue life changes.

Perhaps this is the year you are going to stick to your resolution, shed those extra pounds, eat healthier and begin caring about your fitness. There are, however, tools to make your resolutions more attainable and sustainable, so, whether you are still on track and struggling or have careened over the rails, take heart. Let’s get you to your destination, and beyond.

As you set out on the lifelong journey, always remember to set specific goals, but don’t live for your goals, live for your journey.

Be patient with and caring to yourself, like your own best, most supportive friend. Find new systems of rewards — a massage perhaps, or shopping (assuming you are not trying to reduce your shopping).


Forget perfection

We often set goals based on our, goal instead of our reality. You are not going to become a full triathlete, swimming 2.4 miles, biking 112 miles, and running 26.2 miles if you are going from a sedentary life; that is a great way to discourage yourself.

Likewise, you are not going to become Joe or Jane six-pack in a week, or a month, or maybe even in a year.

Ripping our hours in the gym, then looking in the mirror each day hoping to see the packs of your labour is not the best approach. Learn how to balance your changed goals with your life.

Focus on a manageable goal, enjoy the experience, and build slowly from there.

Thank goodness researchers have proven that intelligently exercising at least five minutes per day will make a measurable difference for your physical well-being.


Create a plan, prioritise your time, be accountable

This is basic, just plan; do not wing it. We are creatures of habit and reaction. You need a plan you can follow, regardless of your feelings.

If you don’t have the skill or confidence, get help and be accountable to a group, a friend, partner, or a coach, and promise yourself that under no circumstance will you hide from your accountability.


Evaluate your history

If you have crashed and burned your resolutions before, look back, examine which issues contributed to your goals becoming a struggle. Ideally, you would write down these answers and how you could have overcome these issues. At the very least, think of one word to describe each issue, and a one-word solution.

Learn from your past to build your future.


Be mindful

Before you become weary of trying to make changes, when you are still motivated, for example, if food is your issue, describe your diet honestly to yourself — volume, consistency, food sources, naturalness and quality, and most of all, it’s effects on your body.

Find an adjective which best fits your description when you feel yourself being pulled back into your habits, tell yourself you are not that person anymore.


Support your changes

A lifestyle change requires life changes. You will need the added mental and physical energy to enjoy your new directions, so:

• Finding more time for yourself

• Widen your knowledge

• Make your decisions transparent

• Get more quality sleep time

• Start a hobby;

• Embrace activity;

• Find healthy stress releases.

These types of small changes will minimise the effects of your old triggers and give you the energy to build a new mindset.


Widen your knowledge and mindset

Don’t just depend on motivation, willpower and self-control, as they are emotional and subject to distraction and fatigue. Someone who doesn’t want to eat, let’s say, a live slug is not willing themselves not to — the rejection is a part of their mindset.

Build a mindset. Know why you are doing this, and intend to make this change a part of who you are, not what you are trying to do.

Learn more about your life change, read, speak with those who have gone before you; reach out to your coach; embrace your change — learn to love it and live it.

Most of all, understand that small changes do matter and never ever completely give up. You had set these goals for reasons, and those reasons will remain until you make the changes.

Do not concern yourself with struggling, concern yourself with giving up — that’s the only real failure.

You have it in you to do it, we all do.


Fitz-George Rattray is the director of Intekai Academy, which is focused on helping people live a healthy lifestyle through nutrition and weight management. If you are interested in losing weight or living a healthier lifestyle, give them a call at 876-863-5923, or visit their website at

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