How consistent were you with working out and eating well during quarantine? I ask because as I return to work in person as a coach and members are coming back to classes, it seems like a lot of them did not continue to stay consistent during quarantine with workouts and eating healthy. This got me thinking… I could look at this two ways: I could wonder if training and nutrition was a priority for them, question their motivation and discipline or I could wonder how convenience plays a role for people when it comes to being consistent in training and eating well.
For me, I think there is probably no way I could have taken 4 months off from working out. However, I probably have a lot of advantages that keep me going, for one, I went to college for this, this is my job, and I also have a few tools at home that I can use to keep me active.
Not everyone has these advantages though.
As a coach, something I teach people is to make their environment work for them, to create systems and processes that help make the healthy choice easier.
For example, packing gym clothes the night before, packing lunch the night before, not buying foods that we tend to overeat.
As I see that lots of my members didn’t consistently workout, it makes me think that for many, the power of convenience is a key to sustaining healthy habits.
For them, perhaps it was the convenience of having a gym membership at their place of employment, as well as classes and coaches to show them what to do that kept them consistent. Take away the convenient membership, and a coach to help you, and what were they supposed to do?
Some transitioned with us to taking classes online, others didn’t.
So it gets me thinking, and wondering, for those who kept consistently working out, what made you keep working out?
For those of you who stopped, how come? Was it because it wasn’t easy and convenient anymore? I’m curious to know!
For me, while my workouts weren’t going to be ideal, I adopted the mindset that done is better than perfect and something is better than nothing and I did what I could.
So if it is a matter of convenience, can we take a moment today to sit down, and contemplate ways that we can make healthy choices more convenient?
Let's create systems, processes, environments that work for us to help us make the better choice easier.
Here are some ideas:
No gym equipment?
- Running needs minimal equipment, head outside with your body and your shoes
- Find some free bodyweight workout classes online
- Get outside for a walk daily
Accountability keeps us on track:
- Find a running buddy to keep you accountable
- Find a group of friends to check in on you about your goals
- Hire a coach!
What about your old health routine brought you joy? Try to recreate that or find ways you can do something similar that still brings you joy.
Most of the time, we take the path of least resistance, so if we can set up routines that help us, we can make the power of convenience work in our favor.
So not only does convenience have real power, but I also want to bring up how hard it is to change.
No matter what kind of change it is, most of the time we resist changes.
When our world was turned upside down, adapting to a new routine, schedule, and trying to figure out a new way of life is hard and trying to figure out a new way to work out on top of that is hard!
This is the same thing that happens when someone tries to change everything all at once to lose weight and get healthier. The cold turkey stop eating all foods that are deemed off-limits, and only eat “clean”. They head to the gym every day with plans to work out for an hour or more, but it doesn't last because its too change all at one time. Change is hard, and that's okay.
So for all of those who were able to consistently workout during quarantine, I commend you!
For those who found it hard, it's okay!
For those of you who are still working on it, remember that something is better than nothing.
So here are some tips:
Build a trusted system because
- Motivation usually comes after action!
Make your environment support your goals
- Reduce or eliminate the unhelpful things whatever those might be for you
- Create an environment that helps you because what's around us strongly shapes our behavior, maybe that's a kitchen makeover
- Reduce or eliminate behaviors that aren’t helping you toward your goals
- Add behaviors that will help you toward your goals, drinking more water
- Make the right actions easy, keep healthy foods on hand
- Define your goals
- Use a planner or some type of schedule and system for routine
- Ask your friends and family for what you need
- Ask for support
Charissa is a Performance Coach, Certified Nutrition Coach, Certified Fitness Specialist, Certified Personal Trainer, and holds a B.S. in Kinesiology. She also holds an M.A. in Higher Education Administration. She is a follower of Jesus, passionate about faith, fitness, nutrition, a lifestyle of total health, meditating, learning and growing!