Deciding to do something every day for a year is a daunting task, so I’ve decided to make realistic changes for 2015. For most of us, it’s simply not realistic to set a single, year-long goal and this is why most New Year’s resolutions fail in the first month.

Our goal at Horizons in 2015 is to promote a healthier lifestyle and help people be mindful of the serious health risks and complications that a Body Mass Index (BMI) over 30 can cause. As for me, I’m the Web-and-social person at Horizons so I’ll be using those mediums to help accomplish this goal. This blog will include posts from Dr. Harris, Dr. Rowser and me, and we’ll be talking about all things HCG weight loss, healthy lifestyle changes, recipes, and general ways to live an all-around happier, healthier life.

My first post is about how I’m taking a New Year’s resolution and breaking it into manageable chunks. I hope this will inspire people to make their own realistic changes that over the course of a year will lead to a healthier, fitter life!

I was inspired by the 30 Day Challenge TED talk by Matt Cutts, in which he talks about sustainable change happening in small steps.

Each month this year I’m going to pick a new thing to try – but I’m going to keep that goal to a realistic time frame of 30 days. This means I’ll have stuck to my goal of making a year-long change work AND I’ll have tried new things that will have potentially created a few healthy habits!

The idea is this:

Telling myself I’m going to practice yoga every day for a YEAR seems totally unrealistic to me and I wanted to quit before I’d started, even though I genuinely enjoy yoga. Telling myself I have to do yoga every day for 30 days seems easily doable! My hope is that after the 30 days I might not continue doing it EVERY day, but I’ll have made it enough of a routine so that I’m able to easily do it 2-3 times a week.

So what does my year look like?

I’m still figuring it out, but so far it looks like this – a mix of challenges to my body AND mind. Some months have more than one task.

January – Do yoga for at least 15 minutes every day (or run/walk 15 mins). Take & blog one picture each day.
February – Complete 30 minutes per day in a free online math class.
March – Walk or run for 15 minutes every day.
April  Read for 20 minutes before bed every night.
May Do 10 push-ups every evening. <— build up this; I can hardly do one!!
July –
August –
September –
October –
November –
December –

How will I measure my progress?

For me, it’s not that hard because I love blogging and having a space to write weekly updates is a very easy habit to make. I know a few people who make a chart with checkpoints and put it on the refrigerator. Maybe there is an app where you can have notifications, or use a calendar to chart goals and reminders.

How is my January goal going so far?

In all honesty, I missed a couple of days at the beginning because of the holidays and not being at home in my normal routine. Now that I’m back on track in my normal life I don’t anticipate missing any more days unless I’m sick.

I chose yoga for my first 30-day challenge because I think yoga is important for everyone who is physically capable of doing it. Most of us sit in chairs 40 hours a week and this is one of the most unhealthy things you can do. Yoga allows you to stretch out and keeps your flexibility up throughout life. I see it as extending your quality of life as long as possible. You don’t want to be one of those stiff old people who can barely move!

This is also a great activity because you can do it for FREE. There is no need to pay for an expensive class when you can buy a $10 DVD – or look up yoga workouts on YouTube for FREE.

If you have a New Year’s 30 Day Challenge, what is it, and how do you stick to it?

We came up with some ideas if you are thinking of a similar challenge but are stuck on what to do!

Write a daily note to a loved one.
Do something each day to be a better parent.
Try an act of kindness each day.
Listen to a song in a new music genre every day.