The beginning of the New Year is right around the corner. Sounds like the perfect time to finally start your plans for a healthy lifestyle, right? Maybe not…
Last January, new gym memberships (not including, Yoga, Pilates, Martial Arts, etc.) increased by 40-50%. Yet 80% of those new gym-goers quit going regularly by the 2nd week of February. In total, an average 68% of all gym memberships are not fully utilized through each year.
Perhaps not-so-ironically, the two most popular New Year’s Resolutions according to Nielson Studies, were “Stay Fit & Healthy,” and “Lose Weight.” Yet, very ironically, the total percentage of participants of that survey who answered those two top results totaled 68%.
Why the major drop-off?
It is quite likely that a majority of people either give up on or simply cannot keep up, with their new routine. If you want a better chance at sticking to your resolution this year, start weaning into this new routine now.
You need to introduce a new routine the right way.
Our lives are repeated patterns of habits we already have. Your phone vibrates and you turn to look at it. Your alarm goes off, but you know that is “Alarm 1” and you have 15 minutes until the real alarm goes off. You are the first one in the office, so your job is to make the coffee.
You can actually trick your brain into being more receptive to a new routine by gradually introducing ways of controlling these habits and easing your mind into accepting new ones.
Choose a trigger, reminder, or reward for your new routine. For example, your “workday” is not truly over until after your workout. Therefore, do not check social media or text your BFFs until after your workout. Or alternatively, you close out your work queue for the day and you move onto the next phase of the day – the gym. Early birds - cannot take your daily shower until after gym.
Next, design it out. After work traffic will be around 15 minutes to get to the gym; so I need to leave at 5:15. Scale that out piece by piece to become your new routine. The brain is more receptive to structure than chaos – so this should work well. Once at the gym: Start with stretching / warmups > Cardio > Weights > 20 mins of pickup basketball. Tailor your routine to you and make it fun.
If you are new to a gym routine, get some help with this last piece. Find someone who can give you an intro-gym-goers basic structured workout. Or you can creepily watch the dude that has the build you are going for from across the room.
Start with what is manageable: maybe 3 cycles, then 4 after a month, then 5, 6 . . .
Finally, bringing this full circle here, make it worth it. What is your reward for introducing a workout regimen? Well in actuality, it is your health and increased quality of life, but make it something more tangible that your subconscious demands.
Again, make your new routine obtainable at the start. If you think even trekking to a gym is too much at first, go for a jog around the block, or follow an 8-minute workout video from home. As you find that you are sticking to a routine over time, increase the level or time commitment to coincide with your goals.
From all of us gym-regulars at Eat The Bear, we welcome everyone in the 40-50% to join us in the weight rooms, but don't be part of the 80% this year. To help yourself get started with you new routine and healthy lifestyle try our free protein powder samples.