What Are Your Health-related New Year’s Resolutions?

By Ryan Schuster

As people begin flipping their calendars to 2013, talk invariably turns to New Year’s resolutions.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before. I know the way I usually approach New Year’s resolutions. I would feel pressured to make some unrealistic resolution like going to the gym five times a week or something, I would work really hard at it for a month or so, fall behind, then stop going at all. Sound familiar?

New Year’s resolutions sometimes seem cliché and aren’t always easy to follow, but that doesn’t mean that we should do nothing. Let’s resolve to be healthier in 2013. That doesn’t mean that you have to give up ice cream or pasta, go to the gym every day and drink wheat grass shakes. You can set specific goals, such as exercising a certain number of days or hours a week or setting a target number of calories to consume in a day, but experts say that you should set realistic goals and be careful not to become discouraged if you have a bad few weeks. While setting specific parameters helps encourage follow through on New Year’s resolutions, there are also some simple tips you can follow to improve your health every day, such as:

  • Adding salad or a fruit or vegetable to every meal
  • Taking the stairs instead of the elevator
  • Going for more walks
  • Playing more with your kids
  • Getting up from your desk and taking a walk during breaks
  • Packing a healthy lunch at home
  • Eating out less.

Here are more tips for maintaining a healthy weight and staying active.

My employer, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota (BCBSND), believes that recess should be for everyone. Let’s resolve to take a few steps to be healthier in 2013. As The Official Sponsor of Recess, BCBSND is working to address health complications such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes that are associated with a sedentary lifestyle. Whether you’re going to the gym or running back and forth from work to errands, you can find exercise anywhere. We’re bringing recess back for North Dakotans of all ages. I hope you’ll join us by making a New Year’s resolution to be healthier in 2013.

What are your health-related New Year’s resolutions for 2013? Do you have any tips for how you squeeze exercise and healthy eating into your daily routine?

Ryan Schuster is an editor in the Communications department at Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota.