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Our HealthBY ANGELA STEWART, Community Initiatives OfficerRecently I had a discussion about how this time of year going to the gym can be stress- ful and overwhelm- ing. You drive by and see the parking lot at the gym and itcan be difficult to join the crowd especial- ly if you are brand new. It happens every year with so many resolutions to get fit, start exercising, and begin a healthier life- style. The other piece that happens every year is that in February and March the crowd will dwindle and many of those goals won’t be met for another year. Knowing it is the cycle of the resolution season I started to wonder how many people actually keep to their resolution, accomplish their goals, and move into a healthier place.Doing a little research I found the statistic in the Huffington Post that only 8% of people keep their resolutions. It was shocking to think that we make these grand statements of change and only 8% of us actually follow through. So what keeps us from reaching those goals when we were so committed to them the first couple weeks of January? One could say that change is hard and some of us just struggle with that. You may have heard health and wellbeing is a journey not a sprint. There is no finish line so making aRevamp Your Resolutionresolution that I’m going to lose a certain number on the scale or be committed to exercise from now on, or revamp my diet to never have anything unhealthy again is pretty unrealistic, causing it to be difficult to maintain.So if you are one of the 92% struggling to stay on track with your New Year’s Resolution try a little different way of set- ting your goals and how they impact your health. Think about the little things that fit into a picture of health and start incorporat- ing those into your life. For example, you want to eat healthier. Start by picking one meal you plan to change weekly. So your goal is not changing your entire diet from day one but giving yourself one meal a week that has great nutritional value to fuel your life. Once you have that meal covered you can assess how you feel from that meal, determine what is different and set a new goal. Maybe the next one is to swap one sweetened beverage to water to feel morehydrated and eliminate the empty calories. Once you begin these changes you can start to expand to more meals, more days, that start to feel like a way of living versus a diet that has a start and end date.A great way to track this journey is a journal to record what you changed and how you felt with that change. Don’t forget to track how you are feeling on day one to give a baseline. You can do this with a common notebook or there are some apps available that provide the same service. Once you begin to replace some of your habits with healthier ver- sions you may find you have more ener- gy, better sleep, or are able to move with greater ease. It helps to see how far you have come in your journey to health and your journal gives a roadmap to set new goals. Don’t forget to also track some of the bumps in the road because you will have those times that you don’t complete the goal for the week but you need to be honest with yourself about why it hap- pened and how it made you feel. This builds accountability with yourself and a greater chance to get back on track.As we move into the end of the New Year’s Resolution cycle I challenge all of the 92% to review your resolution and pick a new small goal that begins your journey. Start a new healthy habit that al- lows you to feel good and is a gift to your- self that chips away at the larger goal that you promised you would do in 2018.269-962-2181 WWW.BCCFOUNDATION.ORGA community partnership to improve health and well-being in Calhoun CountyThe Regional Health Alliance is managed, operated and funded by the Battle Creek Community Foundation.20 SCENE 4302 I HEALTH & FITNESS

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