This week for our Healthy Habits Challenge we’re covering how to build exercise-focused healthy habits. Many of us have the best of intentions when January rolls around, but motivation and willpower only last so long – that’s why we’ll be discussing how to build great fitness habits and how to make them stick!
As we mentioned in last week’s Nutrition blog, habits are incredibly important and essentially form who we are as people. But the truth is, they can be hard to implement! So don’t get discouraged.
How to Make Healthy Habits Stick
You can come up with a whole laundry list of habits, but if you don’t actually practice them consistently, they won’t do you any good! Here are a few tips to make those habits stick.
Prime your environment
Did you know your environment can support or work against your habits? For example, leaving floss out on the counter makes you more likely to floss. But leaving cookies on the counter makes you more likely to eat them. Design your environment to help you stick to your habits by leaving out things that support them and hiding things that don’t. So, keep that yoga mat and those weights out where you can see them and leave your running shoes by the door!
Some habits may seem daunting, like exercising for 60 minutes every day, especially if they’re new for you. But starting small makes them seem much more attainable, and could even lead you to do more than you expect! For example, instead of making it a habit to exercise for 60 minutes daily, try breaking a sweat for just 5 minutes a day. It may seem small, or even silly, but small consistent habits add up over time.
Never miss a habit twice
We all know consistency is key when it comes to habits, but sometimes you may miss a habit – and that’s okay! But resolving never to miss a habit twice allows you to stay consistent instead of completely halting progress.
Track your progress
Seeing your progress over time is extremely motivating! Tracking your habits daily provides a little boost of satisfaction each day, and drives you to keep going over time when you may not feel like sticking to your habit.
A little positive reinforcement can go a long way. Checking off the completion is actually a form of reward. Even consider larger awards for habit milestones, such as a matcha latte from your favorite cafe after completing 80% of your habits for the week. Rewards will depend on your preferences and budget, but they can help provide an incentive for sticking to your habits.
Why Make Movement Goals?
When it comes to goals and habits, movement and exercise goals are typically at the top of people’s lists – with good reason. Exercise has a multitude of health benefits, including reducing your risk of several chronic diseases, helping with weight maintenance, boosting mental health and mood, strengthening bones and muscles, and improving sleep.
For all of these reasons, we’re focusing on exercise-based habits this week. And we get it, getting out of bed and getting moving can be really tough, especially during these cold winter months. But using the tips above will help you master your fitness goals in no time!
Not sure where to start with exercise? We’ve got your back:
- Get in 20 minutes of movement every day
- Have a daily morning walk for a boost of Vitamin D and endorphins
- Try a new group fitness class once per week
- Take a 10-minute stretch break each afternoon during work
- Include two weight lifting sessions this week
Post Workout Meals at Snap
You’ll definitely need to refuel after all of these workouts – Snap Kitchen has you covered! Some of our favorite post-workout meals include the Chicken Tenders with Potato-Turnip Mash, Bison Quinoa Bowl with Peppers and Onions, and Chicken Tinga with Fire-Roasted Corn. All of these meals are high in protein and have a healthy balance of macronutrients that are perfect for post-workout meals.
Tell us which Movement Habits you’re excited about incorporating into your routine. We’d love to hear from you!