As many of you know it is very hard to break a routine or addiction. Have you ever tried to give up something you have done for years? The habit of doing something makes it incredibly hard to break. Have you ever tried to give up smoking or caffeine? Sure the addictive products in them make it hard to give up but the habit of doing it every day is the hardest thing to break.
Our brains love routine. It loves things a certain way and after it gets accustomed to something, the brain doesn’t let go easily. When you try to change a habit or start a new one, your brain will do everything possible to stop you. This is usually the reason people fail at new years resolutions, because their brain trick them into thinking, just one cigarette will be ok, or skipping one day of exercise wont hurt anything. This is the beginning cause of failure.
To start a successful exercise program we need to trick our brain into letting us continue. Honestly, starting a exercise program gets easier with every workout. The first time you do your new workout will be the hardest that routine will ever be. As you get into better shape you will find that the exercises get easier each time and you will start to actually look forward to them.
The first 30 days of quitting a habit are the hardest and likewise the first 30 days of starting a habit are the hardest. If you can trick your brain in to letting you exercise for one month, 5 to 6 times a week you will be well on your way to establishing a hard to break habit of exercise.
Here are some things you can do to have a successful first 30 days.
Many people wont tell anyone when they are starting a new exercise routing. The fear the negative response so many will give. The best thing you can do is to find one or two people who you know will support you on your exercise endeavor and share with them your plan. They will support you along the way and who knows they may even join you.
One major motivating factor I found for myself (I am kind of cheap) is to buy a piece of home exercise equipment and place it in a prominent place in my house. I found that this actually made me feel guilty on the days I did not exercise and got me going when I needed it. I was too cheap to buy something to be wasted.
I left motivational phrases on sticky notes all over the house. I thought of places I may be wasting time when I should be working out and left a sticky note there to remind me that there was something else I should be doing.
The most important factor in all of this is to pick of form of exercise you actually enjoy. At the very least it should be something that you can tolerate. This can be anything from a membership at the YMCA to a exercise video, home gym equipment or even indoor rowing machines. It should be something that your mind can’t possibly make you hate.
Your mind will tell you many things to make you stop your new exercise routine. If you can keep it out of your way for the first 30 days you will be well on your way to establishing a new healthy habit that is very hard to break.
Have experience starting a new exercise program? Please share it below.