Tips for Realistic Healthy Living

It’s officially January and I know many of you are probably looking to get back on the healthy living train after a month of holiday parties and travel. I love that many people prioritize their health in the new year – but it’s important to do so in a way that will set you up for a long term healthy relationship with food and exercise, rather than going all out and crashing and burning in a few weeks. So, with that said, before you decide to give up sugar or cut out all carbs or exercise 7 days a week for 3 hours per session, I’d love to help you come up with a more realistic and sustainable plan.

photo credit: Taylor and Ben Photography

Here are a few of my best blog posts from over the years that share tips for embracing healthy living in a way that won’t leave you face planting into a plate of cookies – or quitting your new exercise routine entirely – come February 1. I hope you find them helpful as you start off your new year!

  • How to Make a Successful New Year’s Resolution – tips for turning vague, overwhelming resolutions (like “I want to eat healthier this year”) into actual action.
  • Simple Tweaks for a Healthier Life – speaking of action… the key to living a healthier lifestyle is making a series of simple tweaks, then making some more, until they become habit. Breaking it up into small, actionable changes not only makes living healthier a lot more manageable, but it also makes the changes more sustainable, because you’re not trying to change too much at once, getting overwhelmed, and giving up. This post contains a ton of ideas for simple tweaks you can make to improve your health, one manageable step at a time.
  • Adding, Not Subtracting for a Healthier New Year – more ideas for how to make healthy living more sustainable and actionable. These are some of the biggest tips and goals I share with my AnneTheRD nutrition clients!
  • How to Get Rid of Sugar Cravings – no, it doesn’t involve cutting out sugar.
  • 7 Common Nutrition Myths – and why you shouldn’t believe them.

What are your health-related goals for the new year? And if necessary, can you make any of them more actionable and sustainable? My goal is to get back into fitness in a realistic and gentle way, taking into account my new routine as a new mom, and the limitations I’m going to have for a little while given my C section (and pregnancy) recovery. I’ll talk more about how I’m going to do this in a gradual and sustainable way soon – stay tuned!


  1. 1

    My health related goals include, getting outside more. I plan to make this actionable by taking a walk at least 3-4 days a week and I have also signed up for a local hiking club to help encourage and motivate me. I LOVE the outdoors and know I always feel better when I get to spend more time in the fresh air. Thanks for these goal reminders!

  2. 3

    My fitness goal is to keep moving forward by challenging myself with new levels on the arctrainer and stairmill, incorporating real arm workouts by not being afraid of looking weird using the weights and not machines and the big goal that I have been working on is to run a 5k before August.
    My nutrition goal is to try and curb my sugar cravings by keeping healthier options – such as unsugared dried fruit which has the bonus of it also being chewy – but also not overindulging in those either. Sugar cravings are my hardest ones especially as I love to bake.

  3. 7

    I enjoy having a sweet treat at the end of each day because I bring me joy and satisfaction. I have no intention of changing that. Just wanted to pipe in that there’s nothing “wrong” with having a pattern you enjoy that includes treats.

  4. 9

    Love this attitude towards realistic healthy changes! A bunch of people in a Facebook group I’m in are cutting sugar out this month and all last week I kept reading posts like “Since I’m giving up sugar next month I’m eating all the sugar I can now.” It was driving me crazy!
    My health-related goal for the year is less fast food. It got bad last year with pregnancy fatigue and then the difficulty of making dinner with a newborn. I’m going to look for some easy recipes and get back into the habit of meal planning.

  5. 10

    I love trying to focus on smaller, more sustainable goals. I am cutting back on sugar this month as I feel I need a little balance after the holidays, but am not cutting it out entirely. One of my goals this year is to make my yoga practice more consistent and get comfortable/confident in a couple of inversions I have been working on.

  6. 11

    Great post! I feel quite happy with my fitness right now – I complete Barre3 workouts at home with my online subscription plus have taken several in studio – but my twin and I want to attend one class together each month. I also want to strengthen my yoga practice a bit more and make stretching a priority. Thank you for all of your tips!

  7. 12

    It’s so easy to get drawn into the trap of wanting to change everything right now. I like your idea of adding something healthful into my daily routine.

  8. 13

    My goal is to average 3 workouts per week! I averaged 2.5 in 2017 which I was ok with since working motherhood makes things hard! This year my goal is to step it up, realistically. :)

  9. 15

    Great post! I loved that post about adding not subtracting and I so agree! This year I’m focusing on my own postpartum recovery and easing in to movement that’s comfortable and safe for me and my own recovery journey.
    I’m also hoping to be more intentional about my time. Time with my little family of three, time alone to decompress, and time set apart with just Daniel as a couple.

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