Ask the RN: ‘SMART’ can guide Performance Triad participants

| July 18, 2014 | 0 Comments
Capt. Mary Staudter

Capt. Mary Staudter


Capt. Mary Staudter
Tripler Army Medical Center

HONOLULU — As you may know, last month marked the official kickoff of the Performance Triad Initiative.

The intent of the triad is to promote nutrition, activity and sleep as the primary pillars of health, wellness and disease prevention.

Even if you missed the kickoff, it is not too late to get started. If you make a commitment now to take just one small, healthy step each week in any of these three areas, just imagine what you could accomplish by 2015!

Changing lifestyles
Typically, the most difficult aspect of lifestyle change is long-term adherence. To promote long-term success, it is important to set SMART goals for yourself.
A SMART goal is one that is specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound.

The first step in setting SMART goals to improve your health is to assess your current lifestyle habits and identify areas that could use some improvement.
How close are you to achieving the following Performance Triad goals:
•Get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night;
•Take 10,000 steps during your everyday routine;
•Get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity and two bouts of resistance activity each week;
•Consume at least eight servings of fruits and vegetables each day;
•Consume a healthy balance of lean protein, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy each day; and
•Move for at least 10 minutes of every waking hour.

Target objectives
Now identify some areas where you may be falling short, and let’s just focus on one or two things at a time.

Perhaps you realize that you do not even come close to eating the recommended eight servings of fruits and vegetables per day. With this in mind, brainstorm some simple ideas for incorporating more into your
daily routine. You may start by simply eating an apple on your way to work every day and/or packing some carrot sticks in a snack bag to munch on in the afternoon.

If you get tired of eating apples and carrots, switch to a different type of fruit/vegetable. The key is simply to not let those extra servings go away.
At first, you may find it difficult or tiresome to remember to pack these little work snacks, and forget occasionally. However, if you keep at it, before you know it, these little healthy steps will become part of your daily routine … your lifestyle.

Apply this same concept to any other facet of health. If you need to get more sleep and/or exercise for instance, try following these steps: 1) identify the barriers that are keeping you from doing so, 2) make an action plan to break down or break through these barriers little by little, 3) implement your action plan in a SMART way, and 4) reassess your progress on a regular basis and adjust, if necessary.

Improve your health
The Performance Triad offers a 26-Week Challenge to assist you in your efforts to improve your health. The challenge provides weekly, achievable healthy steps that, when built on each other, will help you take a giant leap toward achieving your health goals. Check out the Performance Triad 26-Week Challenge and get started today!
(Editor’s note: Staudter is the chief, Production & Service at TAMC.)

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