Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Gym Tip: Form the Habit

Furthering my attempt to make this blog about everything and nothing, I've decided to start posting some gym tips. I get asked a lot of questions about the gym, so maybe I can share my knowledge on a wider scale.

Please note, I am in no way qualified to be giving exercise advice. I've been working out for about 15 years, and while I love it, am completely addicted to it as well and have absolutely no training as a trainer or a nutritionist.

So, the first type is to Form the Habit of going to the gym.

Interestingly, there is no evidence to suggest that habits take a certain amount of time to form, but they do form over varying amounts of time.

What this means is, going to the gym will get easier, but it could take 10 days, or it could take 100 days to actually "get in the habit" of going to the gym.

Here are some tips to help you get in that habit.

  1. Hire a personal trainer. I started with a trainer. Everyone should start with a trainer. If nothing else, you learn what you don't know. But this is more about getting in the habit right now. If you're paying for sessions, you're more likely to get your butt in the gym. No body likes to burn money.
  2. Find a work out partner. The second best option after a personal trainer is a work out parter who will push you to be in the gym. Not only that, but this gym partner will probably rely on you to push them, making you both (gasp) accountable to each other. You won't want to let the other one down.
  3. Tell someone to ask you about your workouts. Tell a co-worker you going to start working out and you want him or her to ask you about your workouts. If you have to tell someone how your workouts are going, you're more likely to.....that's right.....work out.
  4. Don't do the home gym thing. Home gyms can be great. I desperately want some cardio equipment and basics in my home. But not for the person trying to form the habit. It's too easy to put it off, knowing it's conveniently located and you can "do it any time." You need that sense of urgency.
  5. Don't sweat a missed day. Don't even try to make up for it. If you miss a day, you miss a day. There is no getting it back, so just go the next day. Keep it at one, and you're fine.
  6. Go early. If you start forming the habit by going early and then you do miss a day, your body is going to be mad at you for the whole day. And trust me, you'll feel the difference.
  7. Take weekends off. Use this as a reward, but get in the gym before work on the other days.

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