New Year’s Health Resolutions

If I was a rational human I wouldn’t wait until New Year’s Day to make a health resolution. But like most humans I know, I’m not very rational. I’m really emotional. My habits largely depend on how I feel.

Every morning before work I hug my pillow for as long as possible because it feels good and procrastinate getting ready for the day. My resolution last year to get up early and jog daily lasted less than a month.
My resolution to make healthy lunches and take them with me to work died much sooner than that. Why go through the trouble when I could easily settle for a cheap, big greasy burrito at mid-day.
After work? Forget exercise. I’m taking kids to dance, cheer and jiu jitsu. No time to make a balanced meal for dinner either. I’ve got homework. Kids, we’re having pasta again. 
The obvious is that what I need is discipline. Easier said. The idea of punishment and reward feels like jail. And no matter how rational it is, rationalization can always take over. No, what I need is some kind of inspiration to eat better and motivation to exercise. 
Maybe if I played a sport. When I used to play sports I was a lot more determined. It’s the competitive nature of it all. 
Maybe if I took up a class. Nothing pushes you more than when you are graded for progress. If not a class, then maybe a trainer.
Maybe what I need is a friend. A friend who makes goals with you keeps you in check. And keeping him or her in check helps motivate too.
Whatever my method, my resolution is to bring my health back. I’ve gone for too long being the all-knowledgeable nutrition writer, but not so much the doer. I get sick often enough, my cardio has suffered tremendously and I have noticed some atrophy and muscle replaced by flab. 
Right now I’m sure I’m just seeing the tip of the glacier of what is my bad health. And it’s time to turn this ship around.    

Published by David Despain, MS, CFS

David is a science and health writer living on Long Island, New York. He's written for a variety of publications including Scientific American, Outside Online, the American Society for Nutrition's (ASN) Nutrition Notes Daily, and Institute of Food Technologists' (IFT) Food Technology magazine and Live! blog. He's also covered new findings reported at scientific meetings including Experimental Biology, AAAS, AOCS, CASW, Sigma Xi, IFT, and others on his personal blog "Evolving Health." David is also an active member of organizations including the National Association of Science Writers (NASW), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Society for Nutrition, the Institute of Food Technologists, and the National Audubon Society. David has a master's degree in human nutrition from the University of Bridgeport, and a bachelor's degree in English from University of Illinois at Springfield. He also earned his Certified Food Scientist credential from the Institute of Food Technologists.

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