Most people look at adopting a fitness regimen as a life-altering event that is going to take lots of time and require major changes. We can easily imagine the results we want and the next thing you know we’ve entered a 12 week challenge at work or at the gym. Unfortunately, this type of thinking can be really intimidating. When we’re scared we freeze up, and what sounded like a great idea gets abandoned before we even start.
Instead of making lots of big, all-encompassing changes at once, try making small adjustments a little bit at a time. I’ve found that the most successful approach to a fitness program is to start by thinking, “What’s the one thing that I can do today that will improve my health?”
If you eliminated just one bad habit from your life every week and replaced it with one good habit, by the end of the month you’d have four new good habits, and you’d be well on your way to better discipline and even greater results. Instead of having bagels or toast every day for breakfast, have eggs. If you usually go out for lunch with your buddies and have a drink, bring lunch from home and go for a walk or even go to a gym and do a 30-minute workout.
Ultimately, fitness must become a consistent part of your life. Consistently eat well. Consistently exercise, even if it’s just going out for a walk. I know that I have to go to the gym every day. I consistently do my weights. I consistently do my cardiovascular, but I consistently do it at a time that works for me.
Most people start an exercise program and say, “I’m going to get up at 5:00 in the morning and go exercise.” Well, by the third day, they’re exhausted and they stop. Instead, pick a time you can commit to. I just recently changed my morning exercise routine. Now I’m hitting the gym a little later in the morning so I can work out with my son and some staff. I’m just as efficient, and I enjoy the camaraderie of working out together.
Lastly, find a mentor and mirror their good habits a little bit at a time. For example, I’ve always been impressed with Dwayne Johnson, “The Rock.” His trainer is a good friend of mine. He once told me that most of his successful clients work out from very early morning to mid morning. That was actually the permission I needed to change my schedule, because if it worked for his very elite clientele, I was sure it could work for me.
No matter which changes you make to your routine, keeping up with your new healthier choices is what is going to get you the results you’re looking for.