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End of the Year Assessment

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There is a lot of pressure at the end of the year. You want to finish projects you started, you want to be ready to celebrate the holidays and you want to finish strong in regard to your health.

For a lot of people, the end of the year is a time to take stock and see what you have accomplished. How close did you get to reaching your goals? Did you make resolutions last year only to see them crash and burn by February? If that’s the case, I hope you’re not still beating yourself up over it. In my abundant power as writer of this piece, I give you permission to let it go and try again, or get a newer, more attainable goal now.

But if you actually came close or achieved a goal you’ve been working toward, then kudos! My personal goals for the year were to eat better and lose my baby weight.

My program to accomplish losing my baby weight was full of a lot of starts and stops. I worked out, I ran and I signed up for racing events when what I was doing didn’t seem to be getting me the results I wanted. I foolishly trained for a sprint triathlon 5 weeks before the race, but finished the course on race day meeting the time goal I set -- so mission accomplished -- it wasn’t easy mentally or physically.

It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you set your mind to it. Keep your goals small, or short time-frame to make them real. Devise a plan for reaching the goals and track your progress.

To serve the “eating better” goal, I started eating fresher foods and tried to eat out less (the recession helped). I used an online fitness and calorie tracker program (I kept it up for nearly 2 months). I started shopping at the local farmer’s market and signed up for a produce delivery service to keep the organic fresh foods coming at the end of growing season.

I threw away less food and tried to make things from ingredients or freeze them in time so I could use them later in a dish or reheat to eat. I made spinach soup, sweet potato and squash curry soup and I made salads of all kinds. I took on a conservationist attitude in the kitchen, stopping short at composting biodegradable waste (there’s always next year for that one).

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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