Groundhog Day is here and gone, but there is still time for you to resolve to be better.
David Seah, the first person I know to talk about Groundhog Day Resolutions explains his GDR ideas. Leo at Zen Habits talks about Groundhog day resolutions too. It is in the air! So, is 6 more weeks of winter regardless of whether the Groundhog saw his shadow or not. (Hint: the First Day of spring is: March 20. Count the number of weeks from Feb 2, 2009 to March 20, 2009)
So, What is Simpleweight’s Ground Hog Day Resolutions?
Number one: I know I can do a better job at convincing you (and I) that we can and will achieve our fitness goals. I know it, and I will help you to know it! It is imperative!
Number two, and more importantly: Our GroundHog Day Goal is to become physically fit. That Goal is too BIG! however, we need it that way. As I wrote in my previous Groundhog day post, Begin With The End In Mind, we must become absolutely certain where we want to go. So certain, that we believe and know it is inevitable. Remove the fat talk from our consciousness and replace it with fitness talk.
Some suggestions about goals:
- Break out a map (a piece a paper).
- Draw a line of where you are to where you want to go.
- If you don’t know where you are, then write down everything about where you are now.
- If you don’t know where you want to go, then write down everything about where you want to go.
- Then keep that in your mind.
- Then, break this big elephant into small bites. We must start small in order to make good habits.
As we begin to create our new selves, creation and being creative is a habit we must form just as a our fitness habits must replace our fat habits. So, how do we build this creative habit? In Twyla Tharp’s book The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life, the first step she talks about is the “Rituals of Preparation”:
When you have
- selected the environment that works for you,
- developed the start-up ritual that impels you forward every day,
- faced down your fears,
- and put your distractions in the proper place,
you have cleared the first hurdle. you have begun to prepare to begin.
Wow. That is a lot in just one paragraph. I added the list and bold for emphasis. In order to create creative habits, we must make rituals. Rituals are things we feel impelled to do consistently. For some, that means to attend church everyday or every week. For others, it means praying five times a day. For basketball players, it means shooting your free throws in the exact same form every time. If we want to create good exercise and food habits, we have to be boring at first. We have to create rituals. We have to be consistent everyday.
- Decide what time of day you are going to exercise every day for the next week.
- Decide how much time you plan to exercise.
- Decide what type of exercises.
- Decide where you are going to exercise.
- Decide why are you exercising.
- Write this time and what you plan to do on 7 different 3 x 5 index cards.
- Put the index cards next to your alarm or on your mirror or somewhere you will have to see them!
- Set your phone alarm, set your watch alarm, set your clock alarm, set your computer alarm, and set your spouse alarm. Do whatever you have to do to meet this goal for the next 7 days! Each Day, pick up your card, go to the appropriate place and exercise!
Make this exercise time a ritual that is so rigid and so small, that it’s almost impossible for you to fail. Failure will not be possible. Guess, what we will do the following week. Increase the time and keep increasing it until we get to a net-caloric effect, but for now, we start small. We have to.
Mental thoughts: people who are not committed to exercise will ask themselves, how can I fit exercise into my day tomorrow. People who are committed ask themselves, how can I plan my day around my exercise time. Are you committed? Do you really want to become physical fit and achieve your ideal body? If so, change the questions you ask yourself.
Resist the urge to start exercising 60 minutes everyday. You are changing habits. People gradually become out of shape and sedentary. When we come out of the womb, we’re not super fat overweight babies. As we grow, most children are naturally active and moving around. We gradually learn to become sedentary, so we have to gradually learn to become active. If we do it too quick, we generally see people fail and over-whelmed. We know failure is not an option. So, start slow.
For those of you who need recommendations, because you don’t know where to start.
- When to exercise?: First Thing you do when you get out of bed is to exercise (you might need to use the restroom, take a drink of water, and put your exercise clothes on and then exercise!)
- How long? 10 minutes.
- What Exercises? Anything. Do Jumping Jacks for ten minutes, Do stretching. Do Yoga, Run in place. I don’t care as long as it is something physical and you are pushing your body beyond what it normally can do. The goal is really to make the exercise a habit. If you need more stringent recommendations, I think you’ll see the most benefits from High Intensity Strength Training (we’re not talking heavy weight lifting, we’re talking weights that make you tired when you get to repetitions 7, 8, or 9.) Possible Exercise plans: The pattern that Jorge Cruise uses in the 8 minute workout is an excellent starter plan. Also, the Fitness Ladder Exercises from the Hacker’s Diet is another excellent quick starter workout. Remember pick something you love. So, if you love being outside, then go for a 10 minute walk.
I was reminded today, that big websites started out small. The first Amazon was nothing in comparison to what it is today. The first city began with a one room meeting place and then evolved into skyscrapers. Our Fitness habits will start small, we’ll build a strong foundation of habits that we’ll layer on top of. We’ll add biometric habits, eating habits, and more exercise habits all of which will make up the Slow Weigh to long term weight management and weight loss.