Resolve to Evolve

Oh hello, January detox-fitness-resolutions, I almost forgot about you.

Following on from my previous articles about persistence with those healthy resolutions during the winter chill, we’re approaching a crossroad in many people’s fitness/diet path.

We’ve reached the critical point of the ‘new year, new me’ game, when hastily selected gym classes are starting to lose their novelty value, when silly detox diets are starting to give way to real life, and when tiredness is creeping back into our post-holiday world.

Welcome to Late January!

Stories of magical healing from nefarious ‘toxins’ by juice cleanses and crash diets started in the new year are rife. But how about we ditch the pseudoscientific mumbo-jumbo? The fact of the matter is that it’s time to identify legitimate healthy living choices, and decide if you want to sustain them long-term.

So what are the key elements is making sustainable decisions?

We all know it. The key lies in tossing aside the fads and the miracle solutions. It’s a statement that no-one wants to hear, but the fact of the matter is that making the switch from a fast-food lazy paradise to sustainable healthy living is a slow, hard process.

And it requires smart decisions.

Sustainability is not a ridiculous fad-diet lemon-detox green smoothie-fest. There’s no miracle cure, no ‘one simple rule to dissolve belly fat forever’. Small consistent changes are the most successful steps. Swap unhealthy snacks for healthy ones, take the stairs instead of the lift, drink more water and less soda and alcohol.

Buying a portion-size appropriate plate is a great help! A sustainable healthy diet requires eating all food groups in moderation (quick tip, if your 2015 diet of choice encourages you to delete an entire food group, it’s probably a load of bull). For the majority of people, carbohydrates, gluten, red meat, and other oft-touted ‘nasties’ are in fact not evil. However it’s essential to learn what ‘eat in moderation’ means.

As for exercise, the important thing at the start is to do anything, anything at all, even just a walk around the neighbourhood with a pet. Just do it consistently. Once it forms a habit in your life, you can work towards increasing the difficulty level.

Lastly, remember to never work in absolutes. Some days you really do need a mood-lifter in the form of an oreo and a sweet tea. Occasional treats make life fun, and the earth won’t implode if you succumb to their siren song. Life moves on, one day at a time.Cartoon by The Oatmeal

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Lauren Wright

Globetrotting Aussie postdoc on the hunt for science, logic, and humanity. I research metabolism, mitochondria, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other weighty stuff.

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