How to Stick to Your New Year’s Resolution

Don’t give up just yet. Use these four tips from celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak to stay on track.

Harley Pasternak, MSc. | January 04, 2017

As we begin to celebrate the new year, it’s hard not to obsess about how to make healthy lifestyle changes.

But where to begin? From no-carb diets and juice cleanses to Spinning and yoga, countless methods abound that all promise incredible results. Trying to figure out what program to trust can be so overwhelming that many people give up on their New Year’s resolutions before they even start.

These four habits are at the core of how I help my clients keep their New Year’s resolutions. I chose them for a distinct set of reasons: They’re easy to adopt, they don’t make excessive demands on your life or wallet and, most of all, unlike the fads — they actually work.

Embrace an active lifestyle each day.

Being fit and physically active has very little to do with the gym. It’s not about spending countless hours on the elliptical or any other machine. Rather, it’s about embracing an active lifestyle each day. Whether that is parking your car farther away to log extra steps or taking a tennis lesson with your friends, the best way to reach your health and fitness resolutions is to pursue a lifestyle that incorporates activity and movement throughout your day.

Eat five times a day.

Your day should consist of three meals and two snacks, which equates to eating approximately every three hours. Eating meals and snacks that contain protein and fiber before you’re starving will help you stay in control of what and how much you eat. Studies also show that eating the right types of foods more frequently, compared with the conventional three-meals-a-day approach, can help keep your blood sugar and metabolism steady — both of which are good for weight loss.

Work out smarter with heart-rate tracking.

It’s hard to find the time to fit in a workout, but tracking your heart rate can help you maximize your workouts and train efficiently. My clients and I use the Fitbit Charge 2 to see how hard our heart is working. While I train my clients, I stress for them to hit specific heart-rate goals and also to track how fast their heart rate recovers after intense cardio.

Do one resistance exercise for five minutes each day. 

Forget spending hours at the gym and instead focus on doing one single resistance exercise daily for at least five minutes. Pick a different bodypart each day and choose a corresponding move that targets that area. When done consistently, resistance exercise has the power to transform your body from the inside out.

About the Author

Harley Pasternak, MSc.

Celebrity trainer and nutritionist Harley Pasternak holds a Master of Science in exercise physiology and nutritional sciences from the University of Toronto and an honors degree in kinesiology from the University of Western Ontario. He is also certified by the American College of Sports Medicine and the Canadian Society of Exercise Physiology, and he served as an exercise and nutrition scientist for Canada’s Department of National Defence. As a fitness and nutrition specialist, Pasternak has trained many celebrities, including Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Halle Berry, Katy Perry, Megan Fox, Robert Downey Jr., Robert Pattinson, Jessica Simpson, Kesha, Hilary Duff and Jennifer Hudson.