By Brett Ehrlich | January 9, 2020

New Year Changes Can Really Make A Difference!

I’m pretty sure I’ll remember the food-related events of December 31, 2018, for years to come as they led me to an overall mind and body transformation in 2019 that I’m confident will continue in 2020 and beyond.


Our family was spending New Year’s Eve in the Berkshires, an idyllic region in Western Massachusetts around 2 hours from our home in Westchester County, NY.


We stopped at the Great Barrington Bagel Company for lunch and I salivated over my order of a Hot Pastrami sandwich on an Everything Bagel.  For some unknown reason, we allowed our then 8-year-old twin daughters to each order the same sandwich.  To no one’s surprise, they both ate less than half of their sandwich in more time than it took me to finish my complete sandwich.  Then “rock bottom” happened- I proceeded to eat the remaining half of both of their bagel sandwiches.


That evening, after a New Year’s Eve meal of a bacon cheeseburger and fries, my wife and I sat down for a late-night drink after the kids went to bed.  Over a bourbon, I simply declared, “I need to make some changes to my eating.” Now I don’t think anyone would have looked at me at the time and thought I was overweight, but I had just had separate shoulder and elbow surgeries that fall so I wasn’t participating in my normal activities and I had definitely let myself go a bit.


Long story short, the changes to my life that I started on New Year’s Day 2019 made a dramatic impact.  Not only did I lose almost 20 lbs and maintained that weight loss throughout the year, but in my 40’s I feel better than ever before.


I’m not suggesting that these results will be the same for everyone, but below are four key changes I made that could help you in in the new year


  • Changing My Breakfast Routine– For as long as I can remember, I consumed multiple bowls of cereal for breakfast every morning. They were generally “healthy” cereal brands (Kashi, Barbara’s, Whole Foods 365, etc.) but I always combined at least 2 different cereals in my trough sized bowl.  Now, virtually every single day in 2019 I eat a moderate portion of Siggi’s 0% Milkfat Vanilla Yogurt with blueberries and granola.  The 15g of protein keeps me satisfied until lunch and there is no temptation to keep adding more cereal to soak up all of the leftover milk.


  • Adding Cycling to My Workout Schedule– As mentioned, my surgeries in the fall of 2018 left me unable to play basketball or racquet sports last winter, so after years of resisting my wife’s overtures to get me to try spin classes, I finally climbed aboard the Peloton at my gym in January to see what the hype was about.  I was quickly hooked. My competitive fire was instantly lit as I tried various Peloton instructors (primarily Jennifer Jacobs at first and now a combination of Robin Arzon, Ally Love & Olivia Amato) and managed 120+ rides in my first year. I’m not suggesting that you need to go out and buy a Peloton, but if you can add some sort of consistent cycle training to your workout routine, you will likely notice the benefits.


  • Less Beer, More “Claw”– Cutting out the occasional weekday beer with dinner or the one last beer during a night out was definitely a point of emphasis as I started my changes last winter.  Thankfully this coincided with the “Golden Age of Spiked Seltzer” and I now had a bevy of refreshing, 100 calories options especially Truly & White Claw. Yeah, maybe not the manliest drink to order when out, but at home, it hits the spot and really helped eliminate those empty calories.  Tequila with club soda and a splash of grapefruit juice is another great option to either make at home or order out.


  • Taking A Daily Dose of CBD– Aside from a daily Zyrtec pill that I’m afraid to stop taking, I’ve never relied on any vitamins or supplements.  When Doug & I were working on the business plan for Therapist Preferred last winter, I started experimenting with daily CBD delivery methods including capsules, gummies, and tinctures. Ultimately, I felt that the impact from most methods was relatively similar, but the most important factor was taking something.  On days when I didn’t take any CBD, I noticed I was less energetic and focused. I personally find that our Therapist Preferred Softgel capsules provide the best results but I often use the Gummies or Tincture (in my coffee) for a change of pace. With the overall changes I made to my diet and my workouts in 2019, I’m confident that my daily CBD use was a big contributing factor to my recovery and wellness.


One year later, I’ll admit to still sometimes finishing my daughters’ half-eaten chicken fingers or having a beer after a long day, but the changes I made to my life mean I don’t have the guilt afterward.   If you are looking to make changes in your own life for the new year, go ahead and try some of these “hacks” out or come up with a few of your own. After all, it’s all about what works best for you and your life.


Hopefully you can make some of these changes for the new year!


About the Author


Brett Ehrlich is a sports marketing executive turned CBD entrepreneur as the co-founder of Therapist Preferred.  To support his super active lifestyle including golf, tennis, basketball, Peloton, running, and squash, Brett takes a daily CBD Softgel and applies the CBD Sports Cream topical 2-3 times a day to his arms & legs.  He can be reached at with questions you may have about CBD in general or Therapist Preferred.


Read the Therapist Preferred story here.