Hitting the ‘reset’ button: How to keep the weight-loss New Year’s resolution | Auburn

Now that Christmas has passed and 2019 is here, it’s time to put away the Santa stretch pants and break out the gym clothes for the new year.

Although resolutions can be almost anything, one of the most common is related to weight loss.

Allison Drake, a certified diabetes educator and registered dietitian at East Alabama Medical Center, believes many people use the new year as a reset button on their health.

“I think everyone knows they need to lose weight,” she said. “I feel like the new year probably gives them a new fresh start to want to do that.”

Despite having the resolution to lose weight, many people don’t know where to start. That’s where Drake and the East Alabama Medical Center Diabetes and Nutrition Center step in.

“We help with the prevention of diabetes and with weight loss and weight management,” Drake said about the center. “We also help if you have a certain condition. We can help with nutrition counseling.”

Drake and the other dietitians on staff help provide clients with tips on how to control their weight and a balanced diet to fit their lifestyle, no matter what their income.

“People tell me that it’s more expensive to eat healthy and actually it’s not. It is more time consuming,” Drake said. “My biggest advice is to make that time for yourself, plan ahead, go to the grocery store, cook your meals at home, have a balanced plate with a protein, a healthy carbohydrate and lots of vegetables.”

Drake added that people should monitor what they are drinking because many drinks contain hidden calories.

“Think about your beverage. Are you drinking a lot of sugary beverages?” she said. “Take a look at that and think about ways you can cut back by just drinking more water, less sweet tea, less sodas.”

Drake also helps advise her clients when it comes to exercise. She believes that exercise is a major component in weight loss and that doing a little every day makes a huge impact.

“One-hundred fifty minutes of moderate-intensity exercise a week is what I suggest to people,” Drake said. “If you’re right now doing none, anything is better. We do not have to move a lot to survive, so we actually need to make a point to go for a walk or go to the gym.”

Drake noted that sticking with a new year’s resolution to lose weight may be difficult because of the goals people tend to set for themselves.

“People probably make their goals way too big and they focus on that,” she said. “And they say they want to lose 30 pounds in a month, and that’s just not realistic.”

Despite the odds being stacked against a weight loss resolution, there are multiple ways to keep it.

Libby Gahn, studio manager at the Auburn cycling studio Purvelo, believes goals can easily be obtained. However, it takes time for those changes to be seen.

“Nothing is going to happen in one day, and doing something in extremes is never long-term going to work,” Gahn said.

“I think it is important to eat healthy, but I also think that it’s OK to have a cupcake every now and then,” she continued. “I think as long as you’re consistent with your workout and your eating that I think you will see results.”

Stanley Reid, owner of Clean Cut Elite Fitness in Opelika, feels that consistency is the key to success when it comes to health and fitness.

“I tell people that they must be consistent. The storm is coming; they have to weather the storm,” he said. “If they can get through the storm, which is that March and April months, then they have a better chance of being successful.”

Drake also recommends finding an accountability buddy to make sure a resolution sticks.

“Find a support person,” she said. “Find someone who also wants to make those healthy habits and have someone as an accountability partner. We are offering a diabetes prevention program that would be a great option if someone would like a support system and that accountability.”

The program, offered through the wellness center, is set to begin on Jan. 15 at the East Alabama Medical Center education center. The meetings will take place on Tuesdays at 5 p.m.

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