New Year’s Resolutions

If losing weight or being ‘healthier’ is one of your ‘New Year’s resolutions’, you’re not alone. Battling the post-Christmas bulge is a high priority for many people. Even the media is full of the latest wacky diet or nutrition craze.

However, one of the biggest problems of New Year’s Resolutions is that most of them don’t work! This is because we often make resolutions that are too difficult to keep and require too many changes; the truth is that many are simply not sustainable. Most gyms receive a surge of new memberships in January, but by March, things have quietened down as people realise that going to the gym every day is just not sustainable.

The good news is that if you’re thinking about losing weight in the New Year – whether you’ve already done a Slim & Save programme, are thinking about starting one, or are planning to lose weight in a more traditional way, you can be successful. By careful planning and staying focused, you can achieve your goal. We have put together several tips for you to consider and take on-board before taking the plunge.

Preparation

You can’t under-estimate how important preparation is. Quite often, we just dive head-on into something, and then wonder why we’ve failed. In the wise words of Benjamin Franklin, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”.

  • Write a list pros and cons – draw a line down a piece of paper, and write your ‘pros’ for weight loss on one side, and the ‘cons’ to losing weight on the second column. Try to include a variety of reasons – including physical, social, emotional and psychological reasons – and be as specific as possible. Some examples of ‘pros’ could include less body fat, improved mobility, better self-confidence or body image. Some examples of ‘cons’ could include inability to eat socially, cooking different meals or feeling like you’re missing out. Everyone’s reasons will be slightly different. You may also find it helpful to rank these in order of highest to lowest.
  • How ready are you to change? – ask yourself this question, and decide where you sit on a scale of 0–10. Then ask yourself how you could move yourself on from this point. You may find it helpful to do this scale for the main ‘cons’ on your list. There may be some practical things you need to do as a result, such as changing the time of day you do your shopping, stopping buying certain foods, or putting your partner’s snacks under lock and key!
  • Consider any behavioural links – if you struggle with a particular eating behaviour, such as snacking or binging during the evening, you could think about your thoughts and feeling leading up to this event. Once you know the triggers, these behaviours can be easier to stop. Thoughts and feelings of stress, anxiety and boredom are often triggers for negative eating behaviours.
  • Enlist support – support is really key to successful weight loss. Why not take a friend or family member on your journey with you; they could be helpful in bouncing ideas off, and even introducing some friendly competition. You could even save some money by using our ‘refer a friend’ scheme. If you have family members at home with you, asking them not to eat certain foods in front of you may really help.
  • Decide on a reward system – here at Slim & Save we recognise the importance of marking those weight loss achievements and goals… Making your own non-food related goals is important too. Make your goals achievable, and regular, for example, a reward for each half stone you lose. You could include rewards like a cinema trip, a new dress, or even a holiday when you reach your final goal weight. Write these goals down on a piece of paper, and stick it somewhere visual so you have a constant reminder. You could also use this as a weight recording chart.
  • Invest in the right equipment – invest in a good set of weighing scales; they don’t have to be overly expensive. Also, you will need a tape measure; the type used in dress-making is best; avoid heavy duty DIY types. Resist the urge to buy a body fat analyser – they are very unreliable.

Staying focused

Even with the best preparation and will-power, sometimes you can feel demotivated and struggle to stay focused. Whilst a difficult or challenging experience can trigger this, it often happens when we go through the normal stresses and strains of daily life. These tips will help you to stay focused throughout your new eating or exercise venture.

  • Monitoring progress – measure and record your weight and other body measurements like waist circumference. Sometimes you may not notice a reduction in weight on your scales, but you will see a reduction in body measurement, so use both together. Sometimes you may need to ignore the number on the scales altogether, and instead focus on your improved confidence and sense of well-being.
  • Record your goals somewhere visible – Make sure you record your weight loss and body measurement changes and keep your recording chart somewhere visible! Weight tracker apps are great, but a chart or graph on your fridge will provide daily reminders that it’s all worth it!
  • Reaching milestones – set regular milestones and reward yourself accordingly. These rewards will really give you something to look forward to, and make all your hard work seem worthwhile. Some weeks, even losing 1lb will seem like hard work, so give yourself a little pick-me-up (non-food related of course!).
  • Each day is a new day – there will be difficult days when you ‘fall off the wagon’ – nobody’s perfect. There is no point wallowing and worrying about yesterday’s mistakes. The key is to refocus and get back on track today.
  • Meal plans – whether you are on a Slim & Save programme, or in the weight maintenance phase, making use of meal plans is important. They will help you look forward to food, as well as making sure you have the right things in the fridge and cupboard. You don’t want to get to Friday and realise you’ve run out of your favourite veggies. Display your meal plan somewhere visual; for example on the fridge, or invest in some chalk and a small blackboard.
  • Practice mindful eating – a bit of a ‘buzz word’, the ethos of mindfulness is to encourage people to live in the moment. It’s about becoming more aware of what you’re eating. It’s about asking yourself if you’re really hungry, reviewing portion sizes, tapping in to when you feel full, and slowing down by savouring the presentation and flavour of each mouthful. This technique can be particularly important for people who are emotional eaters.

Written by Annemarie Aburrow RD BSc (Hons) PGDip, Slim & Save Dietitian.

62 comments

  1. My biggest downfall is excuses. Reading the article really helped on me reflecting. I have restarted so many times. I have finally gone through and eliminated the excuses on day one. Have cleaned out the cupboard and hubby has already made a fantasic meal plan. Don’t forget how important a good social network is on keeping on with the diet, even if you use the forums, these articles, or facebook. Good luck to everyone!

  2. The 1st of January is a time when many people think about what they want to achieve in the new year. Weight loss has always been mine. Like so many others Ive started, stopped, failed, gained, lost. Its such a difficult resolution that it takes preparation, will power and guts! Many people think they are weak, but they complete and lose on a vlcd like sns. Thats a strong thing to do! It is tough, but the rewards are worth it. My NYR is to carry on losing weight,taking every week as it come, I feel confident that I can lose the weight and maintain and have my first “thin summer” it has been a long time coming but I need it and I am determined to smash it! I have about 1.2 stone to go, already losing 2 stone on sns and another 1.7 on another diet. I wish I had found sns sooner. I believe I would of been at my target by now, but hindsight is a wonder thing! My advice, take 7lbs at a time. Soon these will add up to stones and it makes the journey less daunting. Accept that you are human and if you do have a blip its ok to just carry on, draw a line under it.. do not feel guilt or sadness. Think about next new year, how proud and happy you will be of your weight loss achievements in 2016. Life will change for the better. Losing weight has given me confidence Ive never had before. Everyone’s journey is personal, some will take longer but thats ok. Keep going, we can all do it!!!!

  3. I first tried this diet after recommendation from a friend who was also using it & having great results. To my amazement, it actually worked!!! The first diet where I actually lost weight without starving myself. I seriously couldn’t be happier & after January pay day will be re-ordering to shift those extra Christmas lb’s & get in shape for summer. I literally cant wait. The bars, shakes and meals are all pretty yummy which also makes it so much easier to stick to. My favourite meal being the Carbonara! Love love love!!

  4. This year I have resolved to enjoy every moment possible. I’m getting married in August and the build up to this is, one I’m going to make the absolute best of. I’m 45 this year and never imagined I would have a wedding, I never met anyone I wanted to marry. Now I have, I’m not going to waste this time by making memories that I don’t want to remember, or having regrets that I should have been happier during these times. Both my husband to be and me are about to start our S&S journey to be in our best shape for our wedding day – so my resolution this year is to be happy and be thankful x

  5. This is my second time with S&S but I’m much more focused this time. I’ve booked my first holiday in 8 years for May 2016 and I AM going to target or as close as possible. 8lbs down, 2st 11lbs to go!

  6. Sadly my story is similar to everyone else’s. Lost stone early last year with sns, felt wonderful and healthier and again like many others various problems bobbed up here and there not to forget my own health problems and low and behold ….. bye, bye eating plan and bye, bye to the stone gone and the feeling of well being. WELL… Retired last year due to my health, got the ok from docs to try sns again and realised that none of my problems will be resolved by me eating more and using the worry as an excuse to eat. I have far more to gain by staying on plan. My health will improve therefore improving my energy levels, therefore improving my ability to walk further, therefore improving my fitness, therefore improving my sense of well being, therefore improving my ability to cope with problems and on top of all that I will look better. What have I hot to lose……….only weight.

  7. I gave away the junk foods that wanted to become our new ‘bad habits’ before they started! i plan on getting to my 8 stone lost (7.5 gone) omg 8 sound like loads and I could do it by february with this diet 😮 x

  8. My resolution is to lose another stone and a half, I have lost 5stone on Slim and save so far. I can honestly say that this is the best diet I have ever been on, I am really enjoying it. It has helped me physically as I am no longer in pain with my back. It has taught me that I do not need big portions of food and that smaller portions are very satisfying. Psychologically I am more confident than I think I have ever been.I am very focused on getting to goal and am planning what I will be eating when I get to my goal weight, and keeping the weight off
    I have told people about the SnS plan and some have put in orders. A big thankyou to slim and save for the great products and online support.

  9. The 1st of January is just a date, but it spurs us to ‘do something different’ whether that’s a vow to get healthy, a new hobby, a bold career move. But unless you’re ready to do that step, it’s just a date and you set yourself up for disappointment.
    Better to have smaller, monthly resolutions, and carry them throughout the year with a destination in mind: i.e.: getting healthy: first practice mindful eating, then start an exercise routine, then… etc.. The small steps don’t seem quite as daunting and before you know it, you’ll be successful as opposed to faced with another 1st of January making the same promise to yourself.

  10. I’m looking forward to getting back to feeling like me. I’ve seen how this diet can do wonderful things and I’m sure I can do wonderful things with it too

  11. This is my 2nd time on sns the 1st time I got to goal and didn’t follow the refeed and went straight back to old habits and gained 3 stone back !! I hated my self so much. This time in it for a life change I’m so focused and in the zone that I know I will get to goal and follow the rules exactly! Sns is the only diet I have ever stuck to and very much enjoyed

  12. As with many people who make New Year’s Resolutions only to break them I have made what seems to be a life long one that I have so far broken. That is to be healthy, happy and at a good weight. After suffering from stress and anxiety in the middle of last year I decided to undertake a training program to learn to run 5k. I had always hated running and the idea of it but once I started I really caught the bug. It is amazing- a kind of love that I hate but it’s exhilarating, the feeling of achievement. Unfortunately, I have suffered with my knees and the pain has been so intense I have had to put my plans to run on hold. In the meantime I have decided that I might do better to shed a few stone. I am overweight- that old promise to be healthy, happy and a good weight popped up. This time I have decided to reach my goal and go through the maintenance program properly. I might begin running again before I get there but I am committed and determined and I will do it. I have great support from my family and my fellow Slim&Save buddies. It’s truly exciting.

  13. I’ve waited for the worst of January to be over and I’m cracking on in February. Useful advice above! Looking forward to getting on with and trying some of the new flavours (peanut butter in particular!)

  14. My New Years resolution was to lose a stone and keep it off. I’ve tried other vlcds in the past but not been able to stick with them so this is my first time of trying SnS to see whether their products can keep me on track!!

  15. Having already lost 28kgs in six months, I am striving to keep going to my goal. I have had many ups and downs, especially when I have purposely come off plan and then going back on. I have had many bad times in my life which caused me to gain weight, so losing the weight meant all the more to me as it felt as though I was completely letting go of my past. This is a new year, and I have a new body. All thanks to SnS with who this wouldn’t have been possible. So I plan on sticking to it until I reach the goal I set. I will then keep it off. So this year WILL be a good year 🙂

  16. Thus wasn’t a New Years resolution for me .. But advice from a medical professional mid December . After a few weeks pondering it seemed new year was as good a time as could be. I planned increased my water and had long talks about motivation and goals.
    I need this time not only to lose weight but to change the negative eating habits I’ve formed over recent years. I plan to lose weight using slim and save but use mindful eating to renegotiate my relationship with eating so after the refeed I’m ready to be a happy and healthy cook and eater again.

  17. My New Years Resolution is to be slimmer and more care free x I have been on plan since November and have lost 37lb x the plan is easy to stick to as the amount of choice is amazing and tasty x I just like to say thank you S and S as you have helped me to change my life for all good reasons x

  18. My New Years resolutions are to be 100% committed to my sns plan, and put myself first and try and think more positively about myself, we are all different and I don’t need to conform to the thoughts and views of other people, I am the most important person in my life as if I look after myself I can take care of others.

  19. I had everything ready , my packs were waiting , my water flavours were waiting , my mind was waiting ……for the 2nd January . once the family had left after an amazing Christmas and New Year celebration, everything was waiting . Then i got a phone call ……..now you have to have a little history here ……i became disabled 5 years ago and have been waiting ever since for suitable accommodation as i live in a 2 bed HOUSE .this has meant sleeping on the sofa as i cant manage stairs . back in June 2015 my family and i decided that it was time for us all to be a lot closer in miles ( they all live in Yorkshire and i;m in Cumbria , ) so i applied to the local council over there .
    back to the phone call ………from the council in Yorkshire , offering me a lovely bungalow !!!!! perfect for me in everyway ( and able to downsize too so no more bedroom tax to find )
    So my new years resolution to continue my plan on getting to a healthy weight , i lost over 4 stone last year on the plan , is on hold until March .
    this gives me time to move , unpack , sons to decorate !! , feel safe and comfortable in my new home and mind ready to to fulfill my resolution .
    am so excited about everything .xx

  20. It’s not what you eat between Xmas and new year that molds us.decisions are made easier with slim and saver to turn your New Years resolutions into reality. With there support and help we can turn resolutions and dreams into reality !! Wishing everyone a healthier and happier 2016 xx

  21. Started 2 weeks ago and lost 17lb in total!! It’s hard going but defo worth it. I’ve got my daughters wedding in May but need to lose the weight for health reasons too. I’m 42 and not getting any younger, it’s harder to lose the weight as you get older so need to budge the bulge before I’m the dreaded 50!!! Good luck everyone and keep up the hard work xx

  22. My new years resolution is to be truthful to myself, to ask for help and to take good advice and act on it. I need to lose weight, it’s as simple as that and Slim and save can help me achieve my goals. With thier proven history I will succeed even if at times I would rather be eating the wrong items! It was a rough year last year, this year is looking better

  23. Having just turned 40 and with my eldest nephew’s wedding this July, my resolution is to become the healthiest I’ve been in many years. Battling with 2 chronic illnesses that prevent me from doing much exercise means I have to work that little bit harder to lose weight, but I am determined!!

  24. I resolved not to be a fat mum of the bride! My daughter is engaged to be married , and I want to view the wedding photos with joy and positivity, not with regret that I failed to get to a healthy weight!

  25. I started yesterday. 1 st day was hard but it helps having the bars etc tasting so good. Every year I make a promise this year I’ll lose weight.. But this year my head is in gear and at 54 with all my aches and pains losing weight will ease them greatly. Facebook page amazing help from all the leaders and there always seems to be someone there to advise. It’s almost like a family network amazing cannot fault my first few days on this plan x

  26. I first started slim and save in 2014 weighing in at over 16 stone.last year I turned 50 and didn’t want to be fat. Weight loss had been slow ad been on off for most of last year due to a lot of social activity. I am now back on track and on week 3, also doing dry January so social events are easier. Slum n save is the best I ve ever tried. The range of priducts is fantastic and taste yummy. Especially the chocolate chewy caramel bar. Could eat 4 of them a day if allowed. The group support is fantastic and it’s great reading all the positivity. This will my MY year of success.

  27. Where to start? I have always had an emotional relationship with food. I’m currently on my 3rd day of s and s and finally feel like I am getting the balance right, I’ve learnt that I’m not hungry it’s habit and cravings. I always set to lose weight whether it’s new year or not, and finally I feel like I’m ok the right path and journey to doing so. After recently suffering an ectopic pregnancy, I want to lose weight so when I do fall again in even healthier but I’m also doing it for a change in lifestyle and for my holiday in June.

    S and s has already taught me portion control and I always tell my friends about how amazing it really is I wish everyone on this journey success and we WILL get there xx

  28. My New Years resolution is to be a better version of me. That includes tackling addictive eating habits that have made me 7 stone overweight with knee and hip pain and low self esteem.

    I’ve realised its not about how I look, but how I feel inside effects everything I do and say.

    I’m 2.5 months in to Slim and save, 2.5 stone lighter and a million times happier. This is it, I’m going to get to goal this year and prove to myself I can do it. If I can do this after 20 years of failing I’ll know I can put my mind to anything!

  29. My New Years resolution is to find more time for me and stop putting everyone else first! I’m so fed up with my weight and desperately want to get back to feeling like me again after loosing my Dad.

  30. These days I try not to make new year resolutions because I always seem to break them! I think because it’s unnecessary pressure on yourself to throw yourself into something and then just fail miserably. I made a promise to myself this year instead. I want to be healthier and eat healthier, but carrying a lot of weight, I felt self conscious to go to the gym, or even jog in public, so I made the decision to lose as much weight as possible, fast and safely using Slim and Save, then perhaps I would feel more confident in lycra in public. It’s week 2 now and already I have lost 9lb. I eat a meal in the evening with my family but all day it’s shakes and a bar. I already feel much better and glad that I didn’t call it a resolution, just a belated Christmas present to myself instead!

  31. I intentionally did not make my S&S journey a New Years resolution as in the past I’ve never managed to stick to them. I chose to start on the 3rd of Jan as opposed to the 1st and so far it has been the best decision I have made! Preparation is defiantly the key, I spent two weeks prior to starting talking to other members, looking for recipe ideas and writing all of the reasons I want to do this! The support I have have on my journey is absolutely incredible I cannot thank not only all the staff but the other members of the S&S community! I LOVE being able to give tips and advice to others and have already managed to bring three friends across to join us in our journeys! Now I can’t wait to get to my goal and start maintaining! Thank you everyone for your continued support!

  32. I always make resolutions to do something, rather than to not do something. One of mine this year was to wear something brightly coloured every day. As I’ve got fatter, I’ve ended up wearing too much black. Rather than waiting until I am thinner. I’ve bought lots of cheap brightly coloured tops that I can pull in with a belt, or trousers I can keep up with braces as I lose weight. Other resolutions include getting married again. I think this might be harder than losing weight as right now there isn’t a likely candidate 🙂

  33. I never do New Year’s resolutions because I never stick to them.
    I started on the 30th of December I have everything in place for me not to fall off plan. I’ve emptied all my food cupboards and taken all the food down to the Trussell Trust charity for the food banks. I did this a day after Boxing Day so I couldn’t eat it before I started plan. Because now I feel that I felt people struggling financially and I really want myself to stay focused.
    Good luck everybody, the plan really works just believe in yourself x
    Terri Udell-Stringer

  34. I happen to have started in the New Year, but this is not a new year’s resolution. I have been a size 14 from the age of 17 and after 4 rounds of IVF, lots of illness and disability, found myself weighing 17 stone. Each IVF involved comfort eating through the stress of treatment, then the despair that followed. Each time I was “good” for IVF and it failed, I felt justified in eating as there was no point. Now we are needing donor egg treatment and plan to go to Spain. The only problem is they insist my BMI is under 30. I don’t want to fall into the same trap of losing for IVF, then gaining again if it doesn’t work, but I feel like losing weight is the key to making my dreams come true. I want to be a mummy more than anything, and I’ve been using that pain as a way to justify putting on weight. I’m not going to do that anymore. I have to lose 2.5 stone to be allowed to go to Spain, but I want to lose 6. If IVF works I’ll be fitter and have a healthier pregnancy, and safer birth. If it doesn’t then we can move onto adoption without my weight being a barrier. Either way, when I eventually become a mum I’ll be healthier and more able to be the mum I want to be.

  35. I am 46, I have been a single Mum with 3 children who I have raised and now in their 20s. So I have succeeded there. I then finished my degree last year, which took 4 years to do, but waited 17 years to do this, due to raising my children. When I look at a personal goal, its always my weight that stops me.. I have been over weight for the last 20 years, yo-yo’ing and now heavier than ever. I have made promises to myself.. to start to appreciate myself, feel fitter (to enjoy life more) and to stop self loathing how I see myself(to increase my own self esteem).I want to shed 6 stone this year and I am looking forward to seeing that with the support from S&S to help me succeed.. I will be so much more active with my grandchildren and meet someone to fall in love with. This year has to be my year.

  36. Starting today for the 3rd and final time, each time I’ve lost but gone into refeed due to job lose’s and health issues, this time focused and will get into re feed and keep it off for good.

  37. Having lost 69.25lbs with this plan….my New Years Resolution is to keep it off. I came off plan to maintain on the 15th of December and had a 5lb gain. I knew this was going to happen but it was still a shock when I got on the scales. Lots of fabulous ideas in this article, the biggest I think is planning…that’s a must…I love the rewards, it’s great to have something to work towards as well as a new you…
    Happy New Year to all….

  38. This is the first time in 18 years that I’m ending the festive season feeling healthy and positive. For almost two decades I’ve approached yet another New Year with resolutions to ‘start my diet’. I’ve made silent vows to myself amidst ‘Auld Lang Syne’, that this year will be the one where I finally lose weight. Sadly these vows were unaccomplished until 2015, when I finally lost 45 lbs with the help of SnS !! I’ve been trying on dresses today ready for New Years Eve and feel so much better. Yes I’ve indulged a bit over Christmas but I am looking forward to restart on Monday, aiming to reach my goal of another 20 lbs off early in 2016. This year I know it will Happen, thanks to SnS and the fantastic support of everyone on here. I wish all members a happy New Year and may we continue to shrink together !! X

  39. Time for honesty! Okay, my confidence is impacted so much by my size and I dislike everything about myself. This year I turn 45, two F’s. I don’t want to be Forty Five Fat, I want to be a FFS!!, Forty Five Slim, also stands for the reaction I would quite like out of myself once I have reached goal;) I have started a journal and it contains a washing line which I have made from clothing size labels removed from my “BIG” clothes. It’s pretty visual, quite disturbing for me, but at the same time confirming. I will do it because of Slim and Save supporting me on the way x That goes for members as well. We are a truly amazing bunch of people and all share the same journey x

  40. My new years resolution is really to carry on the way I have been going. I have mucked about for ages trying to diet so on 1st November I decided I am just going to do it. I have stuck to it and managed to even diet all over Christmas, so I think if I can do this at the most tempting time of the year, I can do this any time. I am now almost 2 stone down with about 4 more to go and am feeling very motivated and ready to be happy with my size in 2016!

  41. ‘New years resolutions’ I hear people say those words each year and never stick to it. New year gives you a reason to focus and set goals but Annemarie is right, preparation and being focused is key. Don’t eat everything in your house, give some away or throw it if it’s not good for you and you want to lose weight, why wait until you have eaten more and gained more!? The thing about this diet is that it changes your mindset for the future, it made a way of eating for a while but I would call it a lifestyle change. Because after all what is the point in Losing it all if you don’t intend on changing your ways to keep it off. There is no magic wand and the weight won’t go down on its own, I will fall off the wagon and I will have bad days but that doesn’t mean I am flawed, it just makes me human. Slim and Save gives me the tools, skills and focus to make changes to achieve my goals and I love the idea of keeping a log of my measurements because I want to reduce my body fat to a healthy range and that for me is just as important as weight loss because I want to be healthy, and that’s my 2016 goal! Happy new year all!

  42. At the age of 47 I received a proposal from my lovely partner Alan on Christmas Day. We were at school together, we last saw each other in 1985 until we got together in 2012, I’ve never been happier. I know he loves me as I am but I will love myself slimmer. I WILL be a slim bride. I found my Prince Charming eventually after many frogs and I am looking forward to a happy and a slim future ❤️

  43. Been off the plan for Christmas and New Year and I can honestly say I’m looking forward to getting back on plan. I’ve felt tired and sluggish the whole time and totally out of sync, best bit is, so does my partner. So New Year will see us both happily on plan.

  44. Good sound points to remember.
    Starting on the route on 4th when kids and ‘almost x’ back to school/work.
    This is the big heave ho on saying goodbye to the ‘trapped’ me, and releasing the inner me that is crying to be set free again.
    Divorce has been way too long coming, 18mths of hard work after 22yrs of trying to make it work. My new life is knocking on the door, and I know I have happiness on the cusp of being reality.
    I know I can do this, 2016 is the year the magic is finally going to happen.
    Good luck to all starting and also continuing the journey to healthier us-we can and will triumph in our endeavours.
    Happy New Year xx