Maintaining change this New Year

The New Year offers us a fresh start to make some changes in our lives. But change can be difficult and takes time and perseverance…research shows that only about 20% of people keep their New Year’s resolutions!

Make changes for life, not just for January. A healthy lifestyle has huge benefits. Read Máirtín’s story for some real-life, local inspiration:

Máirtín's Journey

Máirtín Walsh, pictured centre, with long-time Croí programme participants Ger O’ Connell (left) and Kevin Martin (right).

Máirtín Walsh is a dedicated Croí programme participant. He completed the Croí CLANN programme (a specialised 10 week, healthy lifestyle initiative) in January 2018, and since then has participated every Tuesday in the Back to Fitness programme (a rolling 6-week programme, delivered by a Cardiac Physiotherapist/Physical Activity Specialist).

“It’s not easy. Every Tuesday is tough, but I can feel the benefits immediately,” says Máirtín.

Eating healthier and exercising regularly will reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke, but you also get the added benefit of feeling much better and feeling more energetic. All it takes is a little patience and the right information. “It’s about changing behaviour. This is my routine now…It’s like going to work, visiting family and doing my Back to Fitness class every Tuesday. It’s part of my life now, and I’ve never once regretted going to a class,” says Máirtín.

Don’t try to do everything at once. Changing the habits of a lifetime takes time and effort. “Set your goals and when you have achieved them, set some more and work on those. As long as you are working on your changes, then it is OK if it takes a couple of months to get everything in place,” advises Ailís, Physiotherapist at Croí. “Máirtín has been so committed and we’ve seen such an incredible change from when we first met him in November 2017,” says Ailís.

“I was terribly unfit and I knew this would be a long-term project. I found it tough at first, but I enjoy it now and I look forward to it. It’s a positive part of my weekly routine. Croí was a launch pad for me…I just bought a bike and have started cycling to work. I’m also training for a 5km run. I’m not a gym person, but I love the group activities at Croí and how everyone is so supportive,” says Máirtín.

“I am much fitter, I’ve more energy and I am more confident. There are no downsides. Once established, it’s easy. Croí has really helped me on this journey. The trainers and advisors are fantastic and put you at your ease. And I think the world of the other people on the programme – they are a great bunch and made me feel so welcome when I joined. New people are also welcomed warmly…people come and people stay.”

2019 is the year for a more healthy you!

Learn more about Croí physical activity and exercise programmes here.