by David Cohen

Getting in shape and loosing weight are two of the most common resolutions to which most of us commit at the beginning of every year. The endeavor of which typically lends itself to our eating less and pledging to commit to a regular work-out schedule. But when the effort doesn’t immediately achieve quick physical fitness, these new year resolutions are just as quickly written off as irresolvable—resulting in a return to the old sedentary/bad diet dynamic.

However, having lost 120 pounds since making my weight-loss new year resolutions in 2009—and successfully keeping the weight off—I can attest that personal pledge, patience and perseverance aids in getting the results you want while looking and feeling your best in 2012.

Here are few some tips/suggestions that worked for me:

Don’t beat yourself up. Getting in shape and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a marathon not a sprint; I promise you there will be more than a few potholes along the way. Yet, don’t let the hardships break your spirit. Prevail. Persist. Don’t ever give up!

Be active everyday. Try not to think of it as arduous exercise: Perhaps consider your gym membership as a form a social interaction to shake off the wintertime blues. Staying active for at least 30 consecutive minutes a day—whether it’s swimming, walking around the track or weight lifting—will provide a feeling of better overall health while also helping to trim your waistline. Also, it’s important not to let yourself get bored. Keep your workouts fresh and try to change your routine from week to week.

Turn off the TV. I have decided to cancel my cable/network television subscription, and instead used the time that I would havespent watching TV to be more active. That was a huge part of my weight loss. It also gave me a clearer state of mind and made the process easier and more enjoyable for me. Television inadvertently lends leads to a sedentary lifestyle and absent-minded snacking. So get off the couch, or at least limit your TV time.

Drink more water.  Drinking water is a key for good life and looking young.  Most people eat more when they’re thirsty but not when they’re hungry. If you eat slowly and drink lots of water, you’ll feel satisfied a lot sooner with lesser portions. As part of my diet, I opted to drink at least three litters of water every day. I gave up on soda and juices, as both contain lots of sugar that turns into fat. A good rule for proper water intake is to divide your weight in half and then drink that many ounces of water a day. For example, those who weigh 180 pounds would need to drink nine ounces of water every day.

Eat more green veggies.  Your mother was right.  Eat at least three servings of greens such as broccoli, kale, green beans or other dark green veggies. For your information: one serving equals cup.

Cut down on midnight snacking and carbs.  Food consumed fewer than three hours before bed time has a habit of sticking around (usually around the mid-section).  To keep the pounds off, avoid snacking after dinner. Make lunch your main meal with meat, veggies and carbs. For dinner, eat fruits, yogurt, veggies or hard boiled eggs. Keep it light and drink more water to fill you up.

Follow these tips and you might start seeing the results you want to see. To reach New Year resolution goals, just keep it up and never give up!