New Year’s resolutions’each January with the arrival of a new year, comes the common phrase that tends to fly in haste from the lips of people across America. What’s not so simple is following through with those infamous and all-too-common unachievable New Year’s resolutions. But making those New Year’s resolutions should include realistic expectations and a plan that helps people reach their goals. Most people make resolutions because they want to change something about themselves that they don’t like or would like to improve. The trouble with resolutions is that with more than 60 percent of all resolutions abandoned in the first quarter of the new year, they are often difficult to keep if they’re unrealistic. It’s no surprise that losing weight ranks as one of the top New Year’s resolutions. With every festive occasion defined by its sweets and family favorites, most Americans tend to overindulge during the holiday season and add on a couple of extra pounds. During the post-holiday months of January and February, many people strive to overcome holiday weight gain. For those with chronic weight problems, the task of losing weight can seem particularly daunting’and urgent’this time of year. Camille Sammons and Elisha Schumann, co-owners of Brady’s newest 30-minute workout center, Curves for Women’ which is a nationally-known franchise designed specifically for the female gender, have documented proven weight loss results with just over one month in the business. “Goals such as a New Year’s resolution to lose weight can be accomplished when set realistically,” said Mrs. Sammons. “A lot of women say, ‘How am I gonna do that’ With sensible eating and working out on the Curves for Women’ circuit that goal can easily be accomplished.” “Realistically, women can lose six inches and a few pounds in the first month in our circuit. It’s important to note that when someone jumps back into the cycle of exercise that they’re going to first build muscle content and increase their metabolism.” Mrs. Sammons went on to add that when muscle content is established, all unwanted fat will burn off at a much faster rate when continuing with an exercise program. “Resistance training also benefits women who suffer from osteoporosis, diabetes and high blood pressure,” said Mrs. Sammons. With a successful first month behind the new co-owners, the local club membership which is capable of accommodating 200 women, boasts 130 members. A rewarding bonus offered to Curves’ members is its free merchandise giveaways. “It’s an extra incentive for our members,” explained Mrs. Sammons. “We like to earn our stuff. It means more to us that way.” Also in the business of shaping figures across the county, Ona Ellison, owner of Tone-N-Tan added, “You have got to be consistent with your exercise. You can’t work out for one week and expect instant results. That’s why most people fail with their New Year’s resolution to lose weight. They get discouraged and give up. “And of course, eating is probably 80 percent of your total workout program. You can’t just exercise and expect the weight to come off, you have to maintain a healthy diet as well,” Mrs. Ellison explained. Dr. Don Rosen, director of the Counseling Center at Texas Women’s University added, “Any time is a good time for a person to make a change in his or her life. The new year often is convenient and makes a good starting point.” “But making those resolutions and keeping them is one of the most difficult tasks for anyone to manage at the beginning of the new year. People also don’t tend to think out their resolutions very well; instead, they tend to make impulsive decisions and rash goals and they expect instantaneous results. “Planning a process to achieve the resolution is critical,” added Rosen when suggesting these following steps for resolution-makers: ‘ Assess yourself. Look at your skills and use them to establish steps toward setting goals. ‘ Select resolutions based on small increments of achievement’have subgoals within goals. ‘ Keep a daily or weekly ledger or diary of resolution progress to help monitor behavior. ‘ Make a written contract with yourself, specifying the details of each step. ‘ Reward yourself, but not excessively, with material items. Graciously accept and enjoy compliments and positive feedback from peers. ‘ Be patient with yourself. Often, people are their own worst critics. ‘ Admit and analyze any mistakes when bad habits reoccur and don’t be overwhelmed by small setbacks. ‘ Seek help from others or those who are trying to accomplish the same thing.