One of the biggest things that we need to consider and look at when it comes to living an overall healthy lifestyle is what are habits, what defines and good and a bad habit, and how to we go about developing them? These are things that not a lot of us really think about when we are going about our daily lives or when we think about living healthy. A lot of times we actually establish habits without even realizing it. Think about it, how many times have you gotten up in the morning and not skipped your morning cup of coffee? How many times do you deviate from your daily route to work? We have established these habits without even realizing what we are doing.
Now, how do we develop these habits and make them healthy? So, to look at developing habits we need to look at 2 things: how can we gradually move into a big task and what is the time frame in which we need to take to develop this habit. For example, our habit overall could be to eat healthier but what does that mean? How do we introduce those foods and take out the bad ones? What is the time frame that we are looking at when it comes to this? Due to all of this, we need to take it one step at a time. So, let’s use this healthy eating habit as an example. When we look at this daunting task, we want to see what the easiest first step is for us. From a personal training perspective, we look at water intake as the first step. How can we adjust how much water we drink. This could be adding in 5-10 oz a week or just working on consistency throughout the week, depending on where the issues lie. From there, we look to take one junk food item and start to slowly limit how much we eat of it a week. Now you may be wondering, why are we only looking at one and taking all of these things so slow? I want to be healthy now, I can cut it out cold turkey! Well, could you cut out your morning cup of coffee every day or could you change your route to work each time you get up and go? How long can you sustain that, a week? A month? We are engrained to keep those habits as they are comfortable and not deviate. The minute we do, our body and mind is so used to either that coffee or that route to work that it will change the way that we feel and think all day. It will throw us off mentally and physically to where more things will not be the same that day.
So, our main thing that we want to do is take these small steps so that we can develop them and if we start to change over the course of a longer period of time, it will make establishing these habits a little easier to follow and then a lot easier to overall maintain for the rest of your life! Whether you want to work out more, eat healthier, stop smoking, or get up earlier in the day, the best bet is to take small steps to help you adapt and work to get you to where you want to be and be able to sustain it for the rest of your life.