Top 10 Realistic Health & Wellness Goals for the New Year

Top 10 Realistic Health & Wellness Goals for the New Year

Posted by Apex Foot Health on 11th Jan 2023

For many people, the start of a new year is the opportunity to create new year’s resolutions. One of the most popular new year’s resolutions involves improving health and wellness. If you are looking to improve your health and wellness for the new year, but not sure where to start, we’ve put together 10 realistic health and wellness goals you can start today.

1. Start Walking

Close up of person walking on trail

Starting fitness doesn't have to be hard; walking is simple, free and can even provide long-term benefits. Plus, walking regularly can even help  build cardiovascular health and strengthen bones. You may notice significant improvements in just a few weeks of incorporating a daily walking routine such as improved balance and mental sharpness.

How to achieve it:

  • Find a partner to walk with you. It’s always easier to enjoy a new program with others.
  • Walk a minimum of 20 minutes every day for a few days a week. Ideally, walk an hour each day.
  • Find a scenic walking path if you’re able to that keeps your stroll interesting.

2. Get Adequate Sleep

Woman sleeping soundly

Sleep is crucial for your health and wellness goals. Sleep allows your body to recover and rebuild muscle as well as conserve enough energy for you to exert the next day. Not getting enough quality sleep can  increase the risk of many diseases and disorders such as heart disease, stroke, obesity and dementia. Aim for 8-9 hours, but no less than seven.

How to achieve it:

  • Go to bed just five minutes earlier every night until you’ve hit your desired bedtime. Once you’ve achieved this, go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, including on weekends.
  • Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, relaxing and at a comfortable temperature.
  • If you can’t fall asleep after 20 minutes, get up and do a relaxing activity until you feel sleepy again.

3. Improve Upper Body Strength

Man doing pushup outside

Lifting and carrying anything becomes much easier when you have substantial upper body strength.  Improving upper body strength improves your range of motion and flexibility plus better bone density. Daily tasks like hauling groceries, picking up kids, and even shoveling snow all become easier when you work on your upper body strength.

How to achieve it:

  • Incorporate arm-strengthening exercises into your workout regimen at least three days a week to start seeing and feeling results.
  • Try working up towards 20 pushups or strengthening your arms to eventually be able to do one pull-up. Some of the best arm exercises can be done with body weight and don't require any dumbbells.

4. Take the Time for Self-Care

Close up of person journaling

Between work, family, friends and other obligations, it’s essential to slow down and focus on self-care. Self-care is not being selfish or self-indulgent, but it is  taking care of yourself so that you can do all the things you need to and want to accomplish in a day. Not investing in self-care can cause low energy, burnout and an increase of physical symptoms.

How to achieve it:

  • Check-in with yourself daily and ask yourself how you’re doing and what your body’s asking for.
  • Prioritize sleep, a new exercise routine, healthy foods and other physical self-care.
  • Start a gratitude journal and write in the journal daily.

5. Boost Your Cardio Endurance

Woman performing jumping jack outside by steps

With benefits like improved oxygen uptake, reduced chance to develop high blood pressure and decreased risk of coronary heart disease,  cardiorespiratory exercises (also called cardiovascular fitness, cardiovascular endurance and cardiorespiratory fitness) can improve your quality of life. The best part? You don't need to spend hours on a treadmill to boost your cardio.

How to achieve it:

  • Try simple exercises like jumping jacks, burpees and running planks in sets of 10-15 repetitions for 1 minute with a 20-second break in between sets.
  • Incorporate new cardio equipment like the rowing machine or jump rope into your workouts.

6. Unplug Yourself

Office with laptop on desk

Putting away your phone or laptop isn’t just good for your mental health, it’s good for your physical health as well. You will develop deeper relationships with actual people if you interact with them in real life, but aside from that, when you’re on your phone or laptop, you’re more than likely sitting or being sedentary in some way.

How to achieve it:

  • Create a technology-free space. Examples include moving your laptop or computer to a dedicated room.
  • Plan non-digital activities a few times a week so that you’re not distracted by technology.
  • Log out of social media.

7. Stretch More

Man doing stretching outside.

You may think stretching is just for athletics, but that’s farther from the truth. The benefits of stretching can be felt by anyone of any level of flexibility. Stretching should also include the feet and toes. There are  several foot stretches that can help alleviate pain and build foot strength.

How to achieve it:

  • You don’t have to stretch the entire body every day. Start with your lower extremities like calves and hamstrings.
  • Find a program of daily stretches or build your own program that incorporates stretching at least three or four times a week.
  • Find a physical therapist who can assess your muscle strength and tailor a program specific to you.

8. Drink More Water

Woman drinking water

With the human body making up about  50% to 70% of your total weight, your body depends on water to survive. Every cell, tissue and organ needs water to work. Water also helps your body keep a normal temperature, lubricates joints and protects your spinal cord and other sensitive tissues.

How to achieve it:

  • Carry a water bottle with you and fill it up throughout the day.
  • Enhance the flavor of water with fruits like lemons, limes and oranges.
  • Alternate water with your favorite soda or juice. Each time you finish a glass of water, switch to soda or juice and vice versa.

9. Build a Stronger Core

Woman performing bridge exercise

Besides aesthetics, a strong core is for everyone. Your core is more than just your abdominals. Other muscle groups of your core are obliques, back, pelvic floor, spine, glutes and diaphragm.  Benefits of a strong core include a stabilized lower back, enhanced flexibility, better balance, a better posture and reduce/prevent pain.

How to achieve it:

  • Focus on form first. Poor form defeats the purpose of the workout.
  • Do it as a circuit with 30 seconds between exercises. Shoot for four to eight repetitions of any exercise or hold any position for just a few seconds.
  • Build an exercise routine that incorporates exercises that work out every muscle group of your core. Exercises include bridge, supine toe tap and bird dog.

10. Learn a New Skill

Man learning how to cook

Have you been thinking about taking a cooking class or maybe joining a sports recreational team? If the answer is yes, take the plunge and sign up! Taking up a new skill can help you make more sense of the world and  counteract boredom. It can also introduce you to new people and experiences that you might not have had before.

How to achieve it:

  • Look within yourself to figure out what skill you want to learn.
  • Work with a coach or join a class with an experienced instructor who can teach you how to do the new skill.
  • Have patience with yourself. You may not be the greatest now, but over time, you will improve on the skill.

Achieve Your New Year Goals With Apex

With these simple goals, you can celebrate the start of a new year by looking forward to what you can achieve. If your health and wellness journey includes footwear, Apex is here to help. With a wide range of shoes, socks and insoles, we have everything you need to start the new year off on the right foot.

View our entire line of  foot care products!