Have you always wanted to incorporate something into your routine, but found it too difficult? The secret? Make it a habit. Here’s how.
Here is a story about two friends who haven’t seen each other in five years:
Chaim: Wow Dovid you look great! You look so slim and fit. What have you been doing?
Dovid (Somewhat bewildered) Well, you remember how I was overweight and out of shape? So, I started weightlifting and dieting.
Chaim: Uh huh, but then what did you do?
Dovid: Nothing. I just never stopped.
Now, I know how scary never stopping sounds, since that means that for the rest of your life (big gasp) you need to work out. But…you don’t always need to have the same goals or the same workouts (even though I would suggest that you do). When Dovid said that he never stopped, it didn’t mean that he stuck to one type of training over and over. It meant that he dabbled a little in powerlifting, a little in strength training, and maybe even some CrossFit. But, what Dovid did right was that he didn’t stop – he continued working out and striving to be healthy.
The problem is that most people get started, but then quit.
What did Dovid do differently that he was able to never stop? Was it that he did a lot of different things? Or was it something else?
The answer is habit formation. Forming a habit enables one to stay consistent throughout your life. Habits can be both a bad thing (biting your nails) or a good thing (consistently working out). Now, you’re asking: How do I make working out a habit?
The answer is called schedule factor.
By making it part of your schedule, you will be more likely to stick to a fitness routine for the rest of your life. For some it can be waking up and going to the gym, while for others it may be after a meal. By putting fitness into your schedule you will be more accustomed to getting it done without even really thinking about it (like brushing your teeth before bed).
Some say it takes a month, while others say it takes 21-days to form a habit. But, whatever the case, the concept of habit formation may be the key to your success. While for a healthy and fit life, it may be to schedule your fitness for a consistent time in your week, for a couple of weeks, until it becomes habitual. Once something is habitual, and you don’t have to think about it, you will be able to make it a lifelong habit and be your healthiest self.
You can use the concept of habit formation for success in all and every area of life–get through the first three weeks. Push yourself. After that, you’re on the way to success.