We've bid a fond farewell to Hanukkah and will soon take the Christmas ornaments off of the trees. It's almost time to say goodbye to 2012. As with most years, I find this time bittersweet. With each passing year, it's hard not to look back at all the things you could have done better. But with a new year on the horizon, there's hope that we can change. We can become the people we've always wanted to be. This year, there's nothing stopping us. No excuses. No backtracking.
I've found that the best way to stick to a resolution is to keep it simple. Whenever I make lofty goals for myself, I always end up disappointed. Why set yourself up for failure? Instead, consider taking these easy steps to a healthier you in 2013.
• Plan for sleep. Getting a good night's sleep is part of being healthy. So, figure out when you'll have to wake, up and plan to be in bed at least 7 hours before that. Start to relax about an hour before bedtime.
• Choose some go-to recipes. Over the years, I've amassed quite a collection of easy and healthy recipes. Without these, my life would be a lot more difficult. To get started, choose three healthy recipes that are quick and easy to prepare. Each recipe should have no more than 6 ingredients, and you should always have those ingredients on hand.
• Have a plan for eating out. You're bound to end up having some lunches out or dinner meet-ups with friends. It's okay. You don't have to stop living your life to be healthy. Just have a plan. Salads are a great choice; just choose a basic vinaigrette dressing and get it on the side. Steamed vegetables and lean meats are also good options.
• Limit alcohol. Remember that alcohol has calories, too. You might find as many as 100 calories in just one glass of wine. So if you have three, well, add 300 calories to your meal total.
• Make exercising easy. Every night, before I go to bed, I lay out my exercise gear for the next morning. This way, there are fewer choices to make (and opportunities to falter) when it's time to get moving.
Healthy Bites appears on MyHealthNewsDaily on Wednesdays. Deborah Herlax Enos is a certified nutritionist and a health coach and weight loss expert in the Seattle area with more than 20 years of experience. Read more tips on her blog, Health in a Hurry!