Be S.M.A.R.T – A New Year’s Resolution

Once again, it is that time of year for New Year’s resolutions to be announced, written, pledged, and shared. Maybe you are thinking about one or many? Maybe you are one of the many people that say “I’m going to get healthy this year”. But, that statement can be very general and vague, often overwhelming our good intentions only to be forgotten and ignored. After all what does “healthy” mean to you? How will you accomplish “healthy”? By doing what?

One way to make resolutions last throughout the year is making them S.M.A.R.T. You got it, a double meaning, smart- as in intelligent, and the acronym for:
Specific/Simple- easy to do on a daily basis, uncomplicated
Measurable- can be accounted for or “measured” in some way
Achievable- limited amount of barriers
Realistic- doable for you, your finances, health, schedule, etc.
Timely- know when this will be accomplished (i.e. 30 min. activity daily, lose ten pounds by Easter) Even if it is a small goal, the sense of accomplishment and success you experience by sticking with it will allow you to build up to more lofty goals.

Some examples would be:

  • Eat three-five servings of vegetables daily
  • Participate in a 30 minute activity three to five times a week
  • Drink 8-9 cups (64-72 ounces) of water daily

Speaking of water, this is a great resolution most everyone can do. Remember back in elementary science and health class when we learned that humans are made up of approximately 60-75% water. In every part of our body, water is being consumed, transferred, expelled, and produced at every moment. We lose water through the processes of sweat, tears, urine, and other natural body fluids as well. Every system in our body relies on water. We simply can’t live without it.

Of course, the amount an individual needs is dependent on their weight, activity level, age, and health (a Registered Dietitian will help you pinpoint specific nutrient needs and requirements along with caloric requirements). Here in the United States, in most places we have clean water straight out of the tap. It is something like $0.12 per gallon.

So fill up your re-usable water bottle, save beaucoup bucks, and spare the planet from an excessive pile of plastic bottles and fancy flavored water containers.

Need more ideas on how to make water more appealing? Try:

  • Freezing real fruit in ice cube trays to add to your water glass
  • Add frozen fruit, sliced cucumbers, lemon, ginger, mint, or oranges (bonus- a complimentary dose of vitamins A, C, and E)
  • Keep a cup by your toothbrush or nightstand to remind you to fill up
  • Buy a snazzy cup, glass, or travel container
  • Be a kid, use a crazy twisty straw

Sip on and enjoy the simplicity of nature’s most precious gift.

Wickam, M. Water presentation. Middle Tennessee State University. April 19, 2009.

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Author: Carla Spencer

Carla Spencer is a Registered Dietitian and founder of 2 Your Health. Her extensive career working with individuals with health challenges led her to create this site dedicated to helping people enjoy their lives while working to prevent or minimize the impact of kidney disease.

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