Written by Foundling Guest Blogger, Madeline Rizzuti, RDN

 

Ask yourself: is it realistic to lose 60 pounds by May? Is running a marathon something I can achieve? Is “eat healthier” a measurable goal? Setting unrealistic New Year’s resolutions only leads to inevitably giving them up. All too often people shoot for the stars and set impossible expectations for themselves. Hey, we’re only human!

 

Now that the New Year has made an appearance, maybe it’s time to kick that resolution into high gear. They key is making SMART goals. They should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and with a Time frame.

 

An example of a SMART goal is something like:

 

“I will prepare meals on Sundays to have leftovers for lunch at work, instead of ordering fast food.”

 

“I will exercise more by joining a gym and doing 2 spin classes per week.”

 

“I will drink more water by replacing daily sodas with water flavored with Crystal Lite at least 5 days per week.”

 

These are measurable, specific, time framed and realistic goals.

 

Some simple and basic improvements to your diet can be:

 

  • DRINK MORE WATER! Cut out sodas, juices, and all other sweetened beverages that add tons of excess calories daily.
  • ADD VEGGIES! Vegetables are a vital source of fiber, vitamins and minerals and (SURPRISE!) are super low in calories. Vegetables at each meal are a must!
  • GO LEAN! Choose leaner protein sources like skinless chicken or turkey breast, egg whites, fish, non-fat dairy, nuts, tofu, and > 90% ground beef.
  • CONTROL YOUR SNACKING! Plan your daily snacks. Packing snacks in advance and rationing throughout the day can help you avoid coming home after a long day at work and ravenously scouring the kitchen for a fix!
  • PLAN! Use food tracker apps like My Fitness Pal or Lose It to help organize your diet and keep track of your intake.

 

You haven’t set any nutrition goals for 2016 yet? Make small, attainable goals. Once you’ve successfully changed your habits, add more! Take one of these tips and run with it. Make it specific to your lifestyle, make it realistic, and give yourself a time frame for achieving that goal. Good Luck! 

 

Madeline Rizzuti is a Registered Dietitian and Diabetes Education Counselor working for the Developmental Disabilities Program of the New York Foundling. She is a New York native who loves to cook and travel the world tasting new flavors.

 

*Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of The New York Foundling, its funders, regulators, donors and/or employees.

 

The information contained within this article is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, it is provided for educational purposes only.