New Year's Resolutions in December?


By Dan Van Veen


A lot of people at least THINK about making a New Year’s resolution – typically those resolutions revolve around some kind of personal change such as lose weight, go to the gym, run five days a week, or whatever.


However, MOST people make New Year’s resolutions on . . . New Years! So, why am I recommending December instead of January?


One of the toughest things about December is that it is super busy, most of us eat more calories than we typically do compared to any other time of the year, it can be really stressful as we interact with people we’re not used to interacting with, and the list goes on.


So, let’s look at it. Let’s say we get to January and think, Man, I just really need to show people more patience (having honked at slow drivers, tussled with people on black Friday, stood in lines, were impatient with servers – even though most restaurants are now understaffed, etc.). OR maybe you’re like me, Man, I really want to up my miles next year (perhaps because of injury or busyness cutting into your miles or you want to train for a distance race).


IF we wait until January to make changes, we’ve missed the window. If you’re looking to work on your patience, December IS the month as you are going to have plenty of opportunities to work on it. You wait to January, and you may have said or done things that can’t be taken back/you’ll regret. By starting in December, you’ll have practiced your patience almost on a daily basis…making it a habit by January! : )


Same with running. Whether you want to run longer, faster, more efficiently – whatever it is — waiting until January to start seeking that goal may sound like a great idea, but let’s look at that. First off, December is a month where we often make excuses for missing runs, cutting runs short, and ESPECIALLY eat far too many calories (so we enter January is possibly the worse condition of the year) and then, for MOST of the country, what month typically has colder (often bitter cold in the north) weather? Uhh, that would be JANUARY. So, in summary, you’re in the worst condition of the year getting ready to try to ramp things up in possibly the worst weather of the year.


But had you started in December . . . you enter January already working on your plan, likely you’re in much better shape than you would have otherwise been, and because you’re already working on reaching your goal, the more difficult weather is easier to handle (at least you’re not feeling the pain of being out of shape AND now trying to motivate yourself when the weather is working to “de-motivate” you).


So, why not give your New Year’s resolution for 2022 a jump start? Instead of just listening to what others PLAN to do in 2022, you can say, “Well, I’m already a month into completing my resolution” (whatever that may be) . . . and if you think about it, you’ve probably done more to complete your resolution BY January 2022 then most people will get on their resolutions for all of 2022!


I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and enjoyed a fun Turkey Trot somewhere! Have an awesome run today!


Dan

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