How To Make Effective New Year’s Resolutions

how to make effective new year's resolutionsWe all want to be successful, rich, and happy, with fulfilling relationships and exciting careers. But why is it that some people achieve those things, while most of everyone else does not? Surely it’s possible to have all those things otherwise we wouldn’t know that we wanted it.

The real question is, what separates successful people who have everything they want in life, and everyone else who can only dream of those things?

You can read any book or watch any interview of a successful person (not necessarily a celebrity, but someone who has attained a well-rounded level of wealth), and they will tell you the secret.

What separates successful people from wishful thinkers is goal setting.

They start with New Year’s Resolutions, but they definitely don’t stop there. They have lists of milestone goals (big events that can be marked in their life), long projects, lifestyle goals, and smaller goals that they want to achieve. But goals are only words on paper until they are attained. Successful people follow an action plan that guides them through the steps to reach each goal.

And they never quit.

2014 is a chance for you to get on the path that you really want to be on and never look back. You have to know what you want and have dogged determination to get it. Trust me, you will never look back and regret breaking old bad habits that held you back and the things you had to give up to gain something much better later.

It’s always 100% worth it, IF YOU KNOW WHAT YOU WANT.

What if you don’t really know what you want? Maybe you know you want something better but you just don’t have a clear picture of it yet. It’s time for you to sit down and do some thinking. There’s no way for you to go anywhere if you don’t have a end in mind! Imagine trying to drive somewhere but you have no idea where you’re going. It’s impossible. You need a destination to type into your GPS in order to get the step by step directions that will lead you there.

New Year’s Resolutions are the destination you put into your GPS. They have to be precise and exactly what you want. If they’re too vague, it’s like putting “restaurants” instead of where you really felt like eating, and being led to McDonald’s instead of The Melting Pot.

Here are some amazing tips for setting New Year’s resolutions from a professional self-development coach, Lucio Del Monte. These are really helpful in obtaining a well-rounded life and achieving real happiness. Money and fitness are not the only things to think about!

Set New Year’s Resolutions in each of these four categories:

  • Physical
  • Career/Business/School
  • Relationships
  • Spiritual

Physical goals include all areas of fitness, diet, and sleep. Choose a few specific and doable habits or goals, and don’t make it too hard for yourself. The key to achieving goals is to set actual activities rather than ideas. For example, say, “I will go to the gym at 7:00am on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday,” instead of, “Get in shape.” See how the first one seems very achievable, rather than the second one is so vague that it seems impossible.

For your Career/Business/School goals, ask yourself what is the next step you need to take to advance in your job? in school? If you have your own business or you want to start your own, what are some improvements you can make? Who can you contact to help you with these goals? What are your specific financial goals and how will you get on the path of achieving these goals? Again, set specific activities that you will DO, not intangible ideas.

Relationship goals apply to your family, friends, and significant other. How can you improve your relationship with your family? Can you spend more time with them? Do you have friends who are a good influence on your goals? Are you getting quality time with your boyfriend, girlfriend, or spouse? What specific activities can you plan so that you can have the opportunity to get closer to these people in your life? Maybe you can go out to dinner or a movie every Tuesday night at 7pm, or have a girls’ night every other weekend with your mom and sister. It may sound like a very structured life at first, but it will be so rewarding when you see problem areas in your life improve.

Spiritual goals involve your inner self. How would you like to improve your personality and strengthen your character? This is the opportunity for you to really sit down and define your core values. What are the qualities in your role models that you want to mimic in yourself? What kind of adjustments can you make to improve yourself and also be a good influence on others? If you are religious, you can examine your faith and see if you are a good representation of it. What can you do differently that will have a positive effect on your life? Remember to come up with activities that will help you reach the ideal you have in mind.

Having a few goals in each category will help you keep a balanced life and improve all areas of your happiness. Behavior change is unnatural, so it will feel a little weird at first when you take on these new habits, but it will pay off!

In order to KEEP your New Year’s Resolutions, review them every week or so, and have pictures or other things that remind you of those goals. For instance, the lock screen saver of my phone is always a goal that I want to attain, whether it’s physical fitness, or keeping to a diet, or aiming to have more adventurous fun in my life. I change the picture often enough to keep my attention, and I find it works really well!

At the beginning of every month, review last month’s goals, cross off the ones you did (my favorite part!!) and WRITE NEW ONES. Keep making new goals every month that follow the main plan you have for yourself. Before you know it your life will be changed for the better in so many ways.

Good luck! Thanks for liking and commenting! Also SUBSCRIBE for more helpful ideas on how to stay motivated and keep your New Year’s Resolutions all year round 🙂

Need a couple nutrition resolutions? Check out The Best Morning Ritual Ever and great dinner recipes to try!

Does Fish Oil Burn Fat?

One of the best things you can do for yourself during the holidays is

  • drink lots of eggnog
  • get your daily dose of holiday Starbucks drinks
  • pig out on the stuffing
  • supplement with fish oil!

Now you might be wondering why fish oil, out of all the supplements out there? If you’ve ever walked into a supplement store, it’s easy to be quickly overwhelmed with all the seemingly “magical” supplements out there.

“This one will make my boobs grow and speed up my metabolism?!”

“This will make my hair grow double time!”

“Does this really burn belly fat?”

If you’re anything like how I used to be, you end up buying what can end up being hundreds of dollars’ worth of supplements that you can’t guarantee will do anything for you.

What if I told you that instead of buying all these different supplements, there’s one old-fashioned way of burning fat, beautifying your skin and hair, and improving brain function!

Yup, you guessed it! It’s fish oil.

Just to name a few benefits, fish oil, it

  • accelerates fat loss
  • makes your skin and hair healthier
  • reduces inflammation
  • helps your joints
  • improves brain function
  • aids cardiovascular health
  • contributes to your overall health

Basically, the more you research fish oil, the more benefits you will find.

Note: The best fish oil supplements to choose are ones that have a higher ratio of Omega-3’s to Omega-6’s in them. This is because the typical American diet usually consists of more Omega-6’s than 3’s, and without enough of both, the effects of fish oil are lessened.

The main benefit I wanted to stress here, however, is the fact that it improves fat metabolism. Many experienced personal trainers recommend their obese clients to supplement with fish oil, and without changing anything else in their diet, their clients will usually experience almost immediate weight loss! It continues to help people of all different sizes and levels of health, and is beneficial whether you are trying to gain muscle or lose weight, or simply feel healthier and better about yourself. It’s the simplest change you can make to your diet, with one of the greatest results.

If you’re not already supplementing with fish oil, it’s especially important during the holidays because if you’re celebrating this time of year the traditional American way, your body is going to need the extra metabolism boost to kick off your New Year’s Resolutions! Remember to stick to your holiday plan this month, and do as much damage control as you can!

For more tips on keeping the weight off during the holidays without missing out on the fun, look at this!

fish oil health benefits


How To Manage Your Weight During The Holidays

staying fit during the holidays

Now that the holidays are in full swing and the season of Christmas cookies and holiday drinks, um, parties is upon us, I thought it would be a good idea to share some tips on how to manage your weight during the holidays, without cutting out the fun of the season. I’m the first person to make a batch of holiday treats and get into the spirit of things so I know it’s not easy sticking to your diet this time of year, but if you follow these tips, you can do some damage control and not have any regrets on how your year ended.

  1. Set a goal for the holidays. What do you want to gain? You can choose to spend this time recovering from an intense workout regime you have been following for the past several months; you can set a goal to simply maintain your current level of fitness to a reasonable degree; or if you are trying to really put on some muscle (this is mostly for men) you can take advantage of this time to bulk up. If you have a realistic goal in mind and a plan to follow, you will be much more likely to not go overboard during the holidays.
  2. When you know you will be going out that evening, have a good, high volume workout beforehand with a large muscle group like legs or glutes, or do a long session of HIIT (High Intense Interval Training). This will make sure you are burning a lot of calories after your workout is over, allowing you to consume more without it having too much of a negative effect.
  3. The next morning do your HIIT. No exceptions! It doesn’t matter if you’re hungover, or tired, or anything, just do it!
  4. Don’t “save” your calories when you know you will be having  big meal that night, meaning, don’t starve yourself that day so you can eat more at dinner without feeling bad. Eat normally (healthy choices) and be smart about it. Also, don’t turn the whole day into a cheat day because that will make the recovery so much harder.
  5. At the dinner or party, take the least-worst option. If you have the choice between liquor and wine, choose wine. Red or white? Red. Have one slice of pie, not three. You get it 🙂
  6. A great idea is to go on a 3-day low-carb diet after your festive meal. Vegetables are always good to eat so don’t cut those out, but eliminate all grains, rice, potatoes, etc. for the next 3 days.

Don’t beat yourself up about eating a little extra this month. Just make sure it’s not out of control, and be mentally prepared to attack the fat in January!

And don’t forget to have fun! Merry Christmas and happy holidays everyone!

The Top 5 Mistakes Women Make In the Gym

Ever wonder how the Victoria’s Secret models look like goddesses onstage at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show? How to get that envied thigh gap? How some women’s bodies look perfectly proportional from head to toe?

It’s really hard living in a world where women have been forced to take on such high standards of appearance. You’ve gotta be thin, but not too skinny. Have a nice round butt, but no cellulite. Long lean thighs and arms. A slender neck and tight abs. Big boobs but no body fat. And no matter how often you go to the gym and try different diets, it just doesn’t seem to be working.

We want so badly to have this perfect figure, and guess what? You only live once. Why would we not deserve to have the body we want?

What a lot of women don’t realize is that there are ways to actually CREATE the body you want. Are your shoulders too narrow for your frame? Guess what. You can build them. Your belly fat bothering you? There are ways that WORK that will banish that fat. You just have to be willing to put in the right amount of effort and dedication.

So what are the secrets that these supermodels know? That Britney Spears and NOT Miley Cyrus know? (haha :p)

I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you what they’re doing, and what you’re NOT doing that’s making alllll the difference.

Mistake #1.  Spending long hours on the treadmill/elliptical/bike.

Running or walking the same (ish) pace for 45 minutes to an hour is the least effective way to burn fat quickly. Your body gets too adjusted to the workout, and compensates for it, keeping you from burning your fat stores (especially belly fat) while depleting your body of its natural supply of glucose. Have you ever looked at a marathon runner’s stomach? There’s a 99% chance that there’s fat there!

Mistake #2. Not lifting heavy weights.

Without going into too much of the science behind it, weight training burns much more fat and calories than a traditional treadmill cardio workout. This is basically because after you’re done with your workout, your body is still burning way more calories than normal to help your muscles recover. In fact, having more muscle burns calories just by being there!The other secret about lifting weights is that women do not bulk up. We get amazing curves in all the right places. That hourglass shape, those toned arms, those washboard abs, and that cellulite-free butt? Yup that’s from weight training!

Mistake #3. Doing the same workout every day.

This includes doing the same leg, abs, and upper body routine every week. Your body gets used to things very quickly, and things that used to work for you in the past will stop being so effective if you do them every week. That’s why it’s super important to stay updated about different workouts, look around at what other women do in the gym (only if they look like they know what they’re doing and have the bod to show for it), and check back here for new, effective workouts so you have a good mix to pick from!

 Mistake #4. Going on stringent low-calorie diets.

Calories, from the right foods, are your friends. Your body needs calories to function and for you to have enough energy for the day. However, they must come FROM THE RIGHT FOODS. More on this later, but if you think that eating a bagel in the morning and having nothing else the rest of the day is something to be proud of, you are wrong! Same goes to skipping breakfast to “save the calories.” Nope, bad. You will be treating your body well and your natural energy level will be up if your calorie intake is only from lean proteins, slow-digesting carbohydrates, and healthy fats.

Mistake #5. Trying to spot-reduce fat.  

It would really be nice if fat spot-reduction worked, but it really doesn’t. Fat in places like your love handles and abs can be burned off in many ways, but doing 100 crunches or those ridiculous love-handle blaster exercises where you lean side to side with weights in your hands DO NOT WORK. Yay! you can cross those off your list. When your body fat percentage goes down, the fat in those problem areas will too. And some people lose fat quicker in certain areas and slower in others, so you just have to see how your body works. But that fat WILL go away 🙂 I’ll be posting some of the fat-blasting exercises that I use and swear by and you’ll see HUGE differences in your results, and make your workout actually work.