4 Tips and Tricks to Form Strong Training Habits
As the month of January comes to an end, you’ve probably realized that sticking to a new year’s resolution is more challenging than you originally expected. There are many possible reasons why you’ve struggled, but more than likely it’s because you’ve neglected to take actions that will help you form a habit.
On average, it takes a person 66 days to develop a habit, so don’t feel discouraged if you’re not quite there yet. Take a look at our 4 tips and tricks to help you turn your resolution into a habit that sticks:
1. Start Small
At the beginning of a new year, it’s easy to want to change everything all at once. It may be tempting to choose a goal that’s way out of reach. Research suggests that you’re unlikely to get positive results if you try to change too much, too fast. For example, if you’ve never trained before it’s not a good idea to make a goal of running 3 miles a day. Instead, make a goal to get out on the trail and walk half a mile a day until that becomes easy. You can always increase the speed or distance once you’re comfortable.
2. Context Matters
Think about all of the strong habits you currently have in your life: brushing you teeth before bed, washing your hands after you use the restroom, making your bed when you wake up. All of these things have one specific thing in common: a consistent context or setting. Research shows that repeating an action in the same context may unconsciously allow you to associate the action with the setting you’re in. Use this to your advantage. Choose to start your desired activity around the same time or in the same place every day.
3. Be Consistent
After making a goal, it’s far too easy to make excuses for why you don’t have to follow through with it.
- “I’ve been doing such a great job so far, I deserve a break”
- “I worked really hard yesterday.”
- “I’m still too sore from my last work-out.”
Don’t fall victim to your own excuses. Research suggests that being consistent in your actions is one of the most important things you can do to make a strong habit.
4. Don’t Be Too Hard On Yourself
We all have days of weakness. If you do fall victim to one of your excuses or forget to follow through with your goal, do not give up! Research shows that missing one opportunity will not effect your habit formation. Begin a new day with a positive mindset. You can do this!
The first few weeks of forming a habit are always the hardest, but these tips and tricks should help to make it a little easier. You have plenty of time to train before we meet at the Endurance Sport Summit this summer, so do your best and show us what you’ve got!