It begins in the first few days of January, when post-Christmas bloating is at its worst. Across the country, we look in the mirror and simply don’t like what we see. Most want a quick way out – and who wouldn’t – and trawl Google for crazy diets or miracle exercises that will get us a pain-free transformation from Christmas walrus.
After several dodgy internet links and some painfully photoshopped weight loss adverts, it becomes obvious that a quick-fix solution doesn’t exist, most of us give up. This year, however, if it’s really going to be a new start, we need to seriously reconsider our attitudes towards shaping up.
Year after year, health advisers, dieticians and doctors have told us to eat more fruit and vegetables, drink water, avoid fatty and sugary foods and to exercise more. They give us the simple truth; if we put less rubbish into our body and burn off what we do put in, we will reach our goal. We listen, nod and yet still think we can have our cake and (literally) eat it too.
We crave fad diets because they are portrayed as being the easy way out, but in reality a difficult way doesn’t actually exist. Healthy eating often starts out as a way to shape up, but it can slowly become a lifestyle. Surely gradual, healthy changes have to be easier than trying to convince yourself that you love raw carrots and celery for dinner?
Changing old habits is, or course, not easy. But, unlike the fads that annually grace the glossy pages of magazines, staying healthy leave you going to bed on an empty stomach. You also won’t get up in the morning knowing that only a few grapes and a weight loss shake are there to greet you.
This year, enough is enough – take control and throw out those old, and sometimes questionable diets. Get used to fruit and vegetables, cut down on late-night snacks and don a pair of trainers. There are plenty of great, simple (and free) ways to exercise, so whether you pound the pavement or huff and puff at the gym, just getting active will make a huge difference.
Ultimately, it does come down to your willpower. If you want to shed those festive pounds, eat more healthily and exercise regularly. Changing your lifestyle – not just your diet – means that you’re much more likely to succeed.