Create new, healthy habits successfully

Woohoo! It's New Years! It's time for that "New Year, New ME" spiel we all know and despise. We despise it because, despite our good intentions, 99% of the time it's wishful thinking that never comes to fruition.

In most cases, New Years resolutions involve a personal fitness, health or self-development goal that people want to change for the better. Everyone starts off super motivated and raring to go in January and lose steam by the end of the month. I believe the main reason people fail at following through with their resolutions is because they either set unrealistic or very drastic goals and become quickly disheartened.

Making a long-lasting lifestyle change doesn't happen overnight. Motivation can only take you so far. You need to ease yourself into a routine that will set you up for long-term success. So how do you go about doing that exactly? I'm no expert in behavorism, but I can share what has worked for me over the years.

  • Choose a 2 or 3 things you want to start with

You don't want to bite off more than you can chew and there's absolutely no reason to anyhow. Choose 2 or 3 things that you feel you can commit to and start there.

It can be something as simple as drinking more water every day. Then buy a water bottle to have at your desk, download an app to help remind you to drink water throughout your day like Waterlogged.

  • Start small but be consistent

We are creatures of habit and every choice we make during the day is a largely influenced by these deeply engrained habits and routines we have. They say it takes 21 days to create a new habit. I'm not sure how accurate that is, but I do know that it takes consistency.

So how about starting off small to get the ball rolling? So, for example, if 2 or 3 liters of water a day seems too overwhelming, start with half a liter or 1 liter. Just make sure you get that amount in every day. Before you know it, your new habit will suddenly be your norm.

  • Slowly build it up and be patient

Consistency and Progression are the key factors in attaining and maintaining results and good habits. Once that 1 liter of water isn't such a struggle to get down, increase your goal to 1.5 liters and so on. Eventually you'll be at your target of 3 liters per day and you've succeeded at creating an awesome, healthy new habit that will benefit you for the rest of your life. The process may seem painstaking, but muster up as much patience as you can, be kind to yourself and stick it out, it will be worth it.

  • If you fall off, get back up on the saddle!

Nobody's perfect, of course! We all fall off the wagon, forget or lose focus - that's just part of the process. The key is to not dwell in it and not let it be an excuse to fall back into less desirable habits or allow it to become a week or month long binge. No one likes a crybaby, so just get back up on that saddle and keep doing your thing. Like a BOSS!

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