UNITED STATES—Well, it’s Fat Tuesday people, meaning it’s an opportunity to indulge in all things bad for your body as you begin to give up something or do something to make your life better for 40 days in honor of Lent. For some people, New Orleans is the party scene of the year on this festive day, for others they indulge in a sugary sweet treat known as the paczki (a fattening, delicious pastry) that is loaded with sugar, calories and fat.

However, I always look at Fat Tuesday as a second chance for most Americans who may have faltered on their New Year resolutions. This is that opportunity to get back onto the bandwagon and to try to not fall off for at least 40 days. When it comes to a New Year resolution we think permanently, however, when it comes to Lent it’s only for 40 days. To me that’s like an opportunity for one to test the waters, and if all goes well, it means an opportunity to continue to implement this new lifestyle change into your diet, your health regimen, emotional or spiritual sanity or money management goal.

For most people, Fat Tuesday gets them thinking about what food preferences will shift in the coming weeks. Some stick to a leaner diet and implement fish, others give up red meat, some give up sweets or alcohol, others sway off smoking or sex (yes this has happened people). In some cases, people take the opposite approach and implement things to help their emotional being like staying positive, setting daily goals, saving more money, spending less money, walking or exercising more.

That is on my list, to actively exercise a bit more. I started off well, but with the juggling of work, work, family and school it seems like a daunting task at times people. You want to give yourself the determination that you’re going to do something, but that body sometimes reacts in ways where 30 minutes on the treadmill seems impossible. However, I will set a daily exercise plan where at the exact same time each day I will utilize the exercise room in my house without any hesitations or excuses. I think staying on a strict time frame is key because if you allow yourself to get thrown off it’s really hard to recover.

To be honest Fat Tuesday has gotten me thinking this is a day that should be implemented every 6 weeks in America. Why it’s a bit of a cheat day for all Americans, but at the same time it allows us to rejuvenate our bodies and our minds to not lose focus when we are working towards a goal. This happens to so many Americans time and time again that we find it difficult to find a way to manage the madness on a daily basis.

Not many people can just give up soda, meat, sweets, alcohol or smoking and never look back. It’s a system, and it’s a system that is NOT easy to accomplish for many people. It requires a level of discipline, sacrifice and strength to focus on a goal that means something to you, but understand temptations will always surround you as well. Celebrate, but be aware of your limitations. I mean St. Patrick’s Day is only a few weeks ago, so you can indulge a bit more on that day for those looking to do so.