Getting into a new routine isn’t easy. In fact, it’s a psychological fact that it takes a human 66 days for repeated action to become automatic. This is how long it takes for someone to essentially get into a routine that comes naturally. Take into account that a fitness routine can be more difficult than other short, simple practices to get used to and it’s understandable that you may initially struggle with a routine. In actual fact, you can implement smaller practices which helps enable you to workout each day. Here, let’s look at some.
Experiment with timings
Let’s be real, a 5am wakeup isn’t going to work for most people. This could only result in you putting your alarm on for every ten minutes and not going to the gym yet losing sleep and being exhausted all day. Or, you may not fall asleep until 1am and you are then to function on 4 hours sleep. And likewise, you may be the type of person that is too exhausted after work to go. Figure out what works best for you and experiment with time management over the period of one week. Once you know a certain alarm wake up call, and a certain time to leave for the gym works, stick with it. You can’t force a routine that simply does not work for your personality type and lifestyle.
Take small mindful steps that make your day easier
It could be as simple as setting a heat pump or radiator to switch on before you wake on a cold winter’s morning so you don’t feel the need to stay in your warm bed. Or, throwing food in a slow cooker so you don’t spend the day dreading the fact you need to work out and cook dinner after work. Each of these small steps can take a big load off your plate and motivate you to stick to a routine until it becomes second nature. Be mindful about each action you take. This also refers to those you should avoid – for instance, you may tell yourself not to scroll through your social media feeds until you have done your morning workout. As humans, we can easily procrastinate by doing tasks that aren’t of value. Of course, you need your winddown time but do this once you have finished your essential tasks of the day.
Set smaller goals and reward yourself
Instead of thinking about the big picture and the stress of sticking to a strict meal plan and workout regime, look at it in smaller doses. For instance, you could set yourself a goal to do four workouts this week where you challenge yourself. Then go for a long walk on the remaining three days. Once you achieve this smaller goal, reward yourself with maybe your favourite takeaway, or a few episode binge of your current TV show. A reward system is essentially like dangling a carrot in front of you, metaphorically speaking. Once you have something to work towards, you will naturally feel motivated to stick to your routine so you can reap the rewards.
Olivia Fairhurst is a content manager for Future Energy, a sustainable energy solutions company providing ducted heat pumps, solar power panels, EV chargers and more.