There is a lot of armchair philosophy about what it takes to create a habit, specifically how much time is needed. What everyone does agree on, however, is that a habit cannot be created if it is not pursued every day. No matter what the activity is, it becomes a mental stumbling block: "Well, I skipped a day last week and nothing happened, so I can do it again this week." Obviously, for certain habits that a person is trying to make or break, this could be dangerous. When it comes to physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle, it is just as important.
The problem most people have when it comes to working out is that they have a goal. It sounds silly to say that. Without a goal, they would have nothing to be working towards, but the problem comes up both with their approach to the goal and what they do when they finally reach it. Let's look at both of those aspects.
The approach that most people choose is to pursue the goal as something separate from the rest of their daily life. For the sake of discussion, the goal is to lose 20 pounds. The person does some research, builds a comprehensive workout plan and starts going to the gym three days a week. Often times this, and a temporary change in their diet, is all they do. They are so focused on weighing themselves that they miss out on other health benefits they might be enjoying. They do not use the process as a stepping point for living a healthy lifestyle overall.
This leads directly to the problem that happens once they have lost the weight. Certainly it is a cause for celebration, but then what? Without that attainable goal, they will have less desire to continue going to the gym. Having not built up a healthy lifestyle around their weight loss, they will be more apt to slip back into old habits and lifestyles, and eventually that weight will creep back on.
A healthy lifestyle is a lot more than just joining a gym or taking boot camp classes, but it also a lot less. It is as much about the simple things - taking the stairs instead of the elevator, skipping that second dessert or turning off the computer and shooting hoops with your kids - as it is finding the best personal training Miami has to offer and building a stronger body. The most important part of a healthy lifestyle is living it every day. It is a choice that needs to be made, and probably argued for in the early days, but it is what turns a choice into a habit, and a habit into a lifestyle. The fact that they lose those 20 pounds, keep them off and feel better than ever is just a secondary benefit.
Jack Terry is a freelance writer and fitness enthusiast who focuses on the combination of mind, body, and spirit when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle. http://www.legacyfit.com