How not to do New Year’s resolutions

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Why do so many people think that the New Year equates to a new start? Everyone starts with good intentions: join a gym, start a diet, sign up to online dating.

But by February, most people have been to the gym twice, devoured left over mince pies along with that tub of Quality Street their auntie gave them for Christmas and not bothered to renew their dating site subscription when the initial free month was up.

New year’s resolutions are great if you can stick to them, but resolutions do not mean a revolution. Yes, after the festive season of indulgence, it is a good idea to lay off the grub and move off the sofa once you’ve finished your boxset binge. However, it’s unrealistic to set unattainable targets that you will inevitably give up on after a couple of months.

I know someone who once said they weren’t going to drink any alcohol for a whole year. This actually put me out a bit as I enjoyed sharing a nice bottle of wine with them. What’s wrong with doing things in moderation anyway? The only reason the resolution was made was because the person didn’t like how they behaved when they were really drunk and was trying to save money. They lasted until April and then went on a massive bender.

It is more attainable and more rewarding to set definitive goals. So, instead of declaring to simply ‘get fit’, why not sign up to an event like a 5k fun run in the Spring? Or really go for it and sign up for a half marathon in September and gradually build your fitness up to meet that target.

I am not against new year’s resolutions as such, in fact I am all for self-improvement; nobody wants to stagnate. My issue is: why do people feel they can only make these resolutions in the new year? Why not just make a new month resolution? You could choose to start doing things to benefit your life at any time. Monday is a new week, make a change then. Tomorrow is a new day, make a change then.

There are things I want to change in my life, but I’m implementing these changes at times that are good for me, not waiting until the new year rolls around. Although, I am putting off my running training until the weather gets a bit nicer. That can be my new month resolution for March. I am running a Tough Mudder obstacle course in May, so I have already started my strength training in preparation. Feel free to join me!

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