New Year’s resolutions I will actually commit to

January 24, 2023 — by Emma Fung
Photo by Emma Fung
Daily planks will help train my sustainability and endurance. 
This year, I am going to “just do it.”

Coming up with realistic New Year’s resolutions has always been a challenge for me, as I struggle to commit to them. Procrastinating less, limiting screen time, saving money — these are all generic ideas that never last. However, in 2023, I am determined to commit to one goal: fitness.

  • Exercise daily

With how time-consuming sports can be, it is often difficult to devote time to them outside of training. As a fencer, I attend four 3-hour practices every week at Bay Area Fencing Club. This often leads to less time for schoolwork, studying and projects, forcing me to cram everything on the days I don’t have fencing. 

Last year, I did not do workouts outside of fencing, relying instead on training at the club to keep me in shape. Because of this, my first New Year’s resolution is to exercise on days when I don’t have fencing. Biking, walking or working out in general are great ways to keep in shape when I don’t have training. To reach my goal, I have to do my schoolwork more efficiently, which entails turning off my phone and setting time limits for each assignment. 

So far, I have been able to stick to this resolution, reminding myself to get some form of exercise every day. Working out not only keeps me in good shape, but also helps me feel better knowing that I’m doing something good for my body. 

  • Maintain a healthy and balanced diet 

Toward the end of 2022, I started to snack more 

throughout the day, telling myself I would be able to burn off all the food during fencing practice. This proved to be an unhealthy habit, for I would continuously bulldoze through chips and sweets even when I was full. I realized that in order to maintain a good physique for fencing, I would need to cut back on junk food and snack on healthier alternatives like fruits, hummus and granola bars. 

So far, it’s been difficult for me to stick to this resolution — there seem to be far too many situations in which eating seems to solve all my problems. With how stressful school is, I often find myself putting off homework by eating snacks after meals, wasting a lot of time and delaying the inevitable. Coming home from fencing often leaves me hungry, and I sometimes end up eating a whole meal at 9 p.m. However, most of these decisions are based on short-term pleasure, and I almost never think about how impulsively eating would affect me in the long run. Because of this, eating mindfully remains a major growth area.

  • Set realistic goals for myself

One big mistake I’ve made in the past is trying new things that are difficult for someone with my athletic ability. Watching professionals perform the exercises gave me false expectations for myself, which often led to disappointment. It is important to break down my goals, since they will eventually accumulate to help me reach my end target. 

So far, I have found this resolution to be useful, and I have been implementing it into my daily workout routine. For example, doing 2-minute planks every day will hopefully lead to three minutes, four minutes, etc. If I constantly keep up with these small exercises, I am confident that I will achieve higher numbers by the end of the year.

While all these resolutions seemed intimidating and difficult at first, I have found reasons to continue them. For me, working out is a source of stress relief, and taking a break from schoolwork to do fitness for 30 minutes is extremely refreshing. Eating healthier gives my body energy and fuel to continue through my day, breaking my habit of impulsively consuming junk food and feeling sick afterwards. Setting mini goals motivates me to work harder so I can achieve higher goals.

 

Although I may not be able to meet every one of my fitness goals, I will use my resolutions to guide me to do my best. After all, Bruce Lee once said, “Long-term consistency beats short-term intensity.” That is a quote I plan to stick to for the rest of my fitness journey.

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