A Healthy Goal

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Garfield is known for his eat, sleep, and eat again schedule, which is depicted with the funniest of intentions. Yet the cartoon drives home the fact that many of us don’t realize how our thinking directly affects how much of life we experience. Garfield doesn’t have goals and sleeps away his existence, and likewise, many of us let our bodies go to waste by living an unhealthy lifestyle.

The goals we make either make or break our habits of eating right and exercising.

Many dieters restrict themselves dangerously for a limited amount of time to reach a set goal for an occasion, and then return to past habits afterward. If we think that we are working out and restricting what we eat to lose weight, we tend to start gaining weight once we attain our goal. Instead, it’s important to implement eating habits that we can sustain for the rest of our lives. Thus we can be ready for any event life throws our way, even if it wasn’t planned!

Similarly, people go through phases of working out. Gym memberships and personal trainer services experience a post-holiday spike each year and business slows from there on out.[1] This post-holiday spike illustrates the ambitious New Year’s resolutions that people make, and that for most people this proves unsustainable. The key to being healthy is staying consistent, and being physically active every single day.

Short-term health goals are great to kick-start a habit, but long-term health should be the most important focus. By focusing on “long-term health” as my fitness and food goal I’ve been able to let go of shifts on the scale, or the lack thereof. This was especially important when I didn’t see results for a while when I first began eating right and exercising. It’s also incredibly important now that I’m not trying to put on muscle or lose weight. Instead, my short-term goal is training to finish a triathlon, but its underlying cause is to keep me moving and eating right so that I’m healthy and happy.

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