Too often we see New Year’s Resolutions fail after just a few days. Likewise, we watch as our friends or family struggle to maintain momentum on the second week of the latest workout craze. What makes us lose interest in doing things that are good for us so quickly, while the bad habits of too little sleep and too much sugar are the hardest to break?
Ultimately, before we can commit to making a change for the better, we must first understand why we so easily become bored with routines that are designed to improve our lives. It may come as a relief to know that the answer lies in our human nature. You can even blame some of this self-destructive behavior on genetics. Skeptical? Fair enough. Consider how often you have been told to switch your shampoo every couple to few months because your hair gets used to it and it stops being effective. Maybe the first time you heard that advice, you did not believe it either. But, after you tried the switch and noticed fuller, more manageable hair after a few days, you were sold on the idea. If the very follicles that produce our hair texture, color and volume are inclined to become stagnant with routine, it only stands to reason that the rest of our body does too.
Now that we have the basic overview of our peculiarly engineered bodies, we can focus on finding ways to keep it interested in the things we want to do to help it develop. Obviously, we can assume that changing up a routine every few weeks would be helpful. This is actually beneficial in a few ways. Other than keeping the body and mind engaged in the activity, it also sparks a desire to work other muscle groups regularly. Consistently performing the same routines without any variety is not only boring, but can lead to overdeveloped muscles in one area and pitifully weak ones in another area. The next way to stay interested is to set small and attainable goals for a specific routine and time period. If you are focusing on lifting free weights, decide to work your way up to a specific number of reps or a specific weight limit. Stop and move on to the next activity when you reach that goal. If you are working on cardio equipment, make up your mind to move to a new activity when you finish a good book, or when you are able to walk/run/climb a certain distance without gasping for breath.
These are just a few examples to get you started on the road to wellness that you can live with. Find out what works for you through experimentation. No two workouts will be the same for an individual. You may find that one or two exercises relax you and you prefer to do them daily, mixed in with a variety of other routines. The most important thing is to keep moving!