Healthy Habits All Year Round – How?
It’s coming to the time of year where a lot of people decide it’s time to get in shape again. Once Christmas is out of the way and we go into January, people often then tend to go on a diet in an attempt to undo the Xmas weight gain.
But what if – instead of massively loosening and tightening on your exercise and nutrition plans throughout the year, you instead managed to maintain a consistent and manageable level of these healthy habits ALL YEAR ROUND? I guarantee you’d feel AMAZING and make unbelievable progress come this time next year.
But how is that possible?
First let’s look at how a habit is created and see what can do here at Body Shape Fitness to make sure it is not only created, but stays with you FOREVER.
The 4 stages to creating a habit
- The Cue
The "cue" triggers your brain to initiate a behavior.
E.g. seeing someone at the beach with the body you would love to have... or stepping on the scales and not seeing the number you would like to see... or being told by the doctor that you need to work on your health etc... (there's an endless number of personal cues!)
- The Craving
"Cravings" are the motivational force behind every habit.
So, you've seen the woman on the beach with the body you want or the scales with the higher number than expected (the cue). Now you ‘crave’ the same body or the lower number on the scales. So, we need to create the healthy habit to get you there!
What you crave is not the habit itself but the change in state it delivers.
E.g. You not crave brushing your teeth but rather the feeling of a clean mouth and whiter teeth.
E.g. you don't crave doing exercise, you possibly crave one of the following things; the euphoric feeling, the slimmer/more toned/stronger/healthier/lighter body you will achieve, the stress relief, the break from normal life, being social with other people, the self-confidence as a result of the self-improvement... plus loads of other benefits/reasons!
- The Response
The "response" is the actual habit you perform.
E.g. doing the exercise, eating healthier, drinking more water etc, to get this result are after.
- The Reward
The "reward" is the end goal of every habit.
This satisfies the craving.
E.g. you saw a slimmer body (cue), you wanted a slimmer body (craving), you worked for the slimmer body (response) and you got the slimmer body (reward).
However, rewards not only satisfy us but they teach us!
If the reward was as good as or better than expected, then it has taught you which actions are worth remembering in the future. (e.g. our programme!!!)
If the reward failed to satisfy you and was disappointing, then you know not to repeat those action. (e.g. rabbit food diets, or a lot of other programmes out there that promise the world but fail to deliver).
I.e. the standard of the reward helps distinguish useful actions from useless ones.
Why does habit creation sometimes fail and people don't get long-term results?
If a behavior is insufficient in any of the four stages, it will not become a habit.
Eliminate the cue and your habit will never start. You alone must have the trigger to begin this journey.
Reduce the craving and you won’t experience enough motivation to act. Your desire to change, must be greater than your desire to stay the same. Here at Body Shape Fitness we will motivate you 24/7 to continue to pursue your goal.
Make the response too difficult and you won’t be able to do it or keep it up. Here at Body Shape Fitness we careful manage and tailor the exercise and nutrition to you, so it is enjoyable, manageable and sustainable LONG-TERM – read on for more details on this.
And if the reward fails to satisfy your desire, then you’ll have no reason to do it again in the future. Here at Body Shape Fitness we will guarantee that results you get from the programme are going to be better than anything you’ve ever done before.
Without the first three steps, a behavior will not occur.
Without all four, a behavior will not be repeated.
At Body Shape Fitness, we are enormously aware of how habits are formed and have implemented it at the core of our business over the 11+ years we’ve been refining the programme.
Now let’s look into the response stage and where people often go wrong with their exercise and nutrition in trying to achieve a long-term transformation.
You might be doing the following things which are making it difficult to maintain an exercise routine long-term:
- You’re not scheduling your workouts
If you live by your appointment calendar, it may sometimes feel as though your schedule takes over your life and limits the amount of time available for a workout. However, if you take the time to plan your schedule and include time for exercise, it is more likely to become a regular habit. Take a few minutes to plan when and where you will exercise and put it in your schedule. Then, if someone tries to make demands for your time, you can say, “Sorry, but I’ve already got plans.”.
Plus here at Body Shape Fitness, we are supporting and motivating you to turn up to the sessions, so you can’t convince yourself not to.
Our sessions here at Body Shape Fitness are:
Monday/Wednesday/Friday at 6:10am and 9:30am
Monday/Wednesday/Thursday at 18:30pm
If you think you could attend 3 of those sessions a week, we'd love to have you on board! Click here to find out more!
- You’re not setting a goal
There are two primary types of goals: outcome and learning. Outcome goals focus on the end result of performing a task, e.g. losing 18 pounds in 6 weeks. Learning goals, focus on the process or steps required to achieve an outcome, such as learning how to exercise with a kettlebell. Having goals is a fantastic way to help you stay motivated and ensure you keep turning up to the exercise sessions!
- You’re not changing your mindset
Refocus your outcome goals to focus on quality of life rather than trying to achieve some media-defined appearance. Instead, think of exercise as a means for improving your health and enhancing your quality of life, allowing you to keep up with your children, go on bike rides, take long walks. If you shift your focus toward using exercise as a means for achieving and maintaining better health, you might be surprised at how motivated you will become to maintain a more consistent workout schedule. Also, by focusing on these goals, possibly without even realising, your body will have drastically changed.
- You’re training alone
Taking the steps to initiate behavior change by yourself can be tough, so having a friend along with you for the journey could help make the process a little easier. Fortunately for you, we have the friendliest group of people here at Body Shape Fitness, all of which support each other every step of the way! Not only does having a laugh with people whilst training, make it more enjoyable, but it helps the time pass more quickly. Having people to hold each other accountable also means you’re less likely to skip your workout if you know someone is counting on you. If you and a workout partner commit to exercising together, chances are greater that you will enjoy the experience, which is essential for establishing a long-term habit.
Also, having us coaches to make sure you’re doing everything you need to get your health, body and mind where it needs to be, will help a huge amount!
Taking these steps to focus on the positive aspects of working out could help change your perception of the benefits of exercise so that it becomes easier to make it a consistent habit. It is only when exercise becomes a regular habit that you will experience lasting and long-term results from your efforts.
You might be doing the following things which are making it difficult to maintain healthy eating long-term:
Your diet is too hard
Even if you’ve had some success with weight loss in the past with a crash diet, there’s a difference between that and having long term success and keeping the weight off forever.
And that’s because the only way to maintain your results is to keep your calories well maintained. Now, I’m NOT talking about some crazy restrictive way of eating. Quite the opposite, actually!
The thing is - when you’re doing a crazy hard diet, it feels that way; you crave a ton of stuff, you’re hungry all the time and you can’t wait for it to be over; that’s never going to be something you can keep up for months and years on end!
That’s why on our 6 Week Programme we teach you how to eat and drink all the foods and drinks you enjoy and STILL ensure you get the results you're after – where it doesn’t really feel like you’re changing anything, if you don’t feel like you’re changing anything, then you’ll never feel like you need a break from it.
- You're starving yourself
Similar to dieting too hard... if missing breakfast in the morning leaves you totally famished by lunch, you’re setting yourself up for failure. Going into lunch feeling starved probably means you’ll eat too much and too fast. It also means you’ll be more tempted by less nutritious food. Who wants to spend time putting together and cooking a meal when you’re just trying to fill the pit in in your stomach ASAP?!
Listen to your body. You should NOT be hungry all the time. Restricting your eating too much can lead to overeating and bad food choices, so it’s your enemy if you’re trying to lose weight and keep it off.
That’s why on our 6 Week Programme we would never promote starvation tactics to try achieve a very short term result, we instead teach you how to sensibly manage your nutrition to ensure you never go hungry and get still INCREDIBLE results! No-one would want to feel hungry for the rest of their life by choice, which is why starvation diets are often short-lived.
- You don't have enough support
I’ve figured out how to lose weight and keep it off - but I'm the same as everyone else, I still get tempted to go for junk or skip my workouts. However, one bad meal can lead to another, one missed workout can lead to another... which is why accountability, support and motivation is CRUCIAL!
Our Body Shape Fitness community is so amazing. You’ll get no end of supporters and accountability partners to help you lose weight AND keep it off.
Plus, us here at Body Shape Fitness have no end of measures in place to ensure you continue to eat the way that's necessary to get your body where you want it!
Hopefully this article will help you make 2022 the last year you need to go on a “January diet” and have a healthy, fit and sexy body, all year round!