This is Part 2 of 2 from the prior post, “Pushing Past Feeling Stuck in Old Habits Part 1 of 2.” First and foremost, I can’t believe it’s September already! I should have posted this last month! Anyways, I digress…
So, what happened with the person who was trying to push past feeling stuck in old habits? Unfortunately, this person is still feeling a bit stuck. German professor of Sports Science, Dr. Walter Brehm (2004), would describe this person as being in the Preparation phase of the Stages of Change model (see photo below). This means the person might exercise in some capacity occasionally (e.g., walk to work, take the steps instead of the elevator, maybe even do some push ups), but would like to begin a regular exercise routine within the next month. However, “next month” might not come anytime soon because the person may have unrealistic personal goals and expectations.
When a person is in this stage, it’s important to create and clarify realistic goals, draw upon positive past experiences with exercise, identify and utilize a support network, and be realistic about any and all limitations (schedule, injuries, health concerns). Thankfully, a certified personal trainer can help with all of this!
So what’s next? Realistically, this person could stay in this stage for quite some time, but what will help is EDUCATION. It’s important to simply immerse ourselves into what we would like to do. For example. If I want to start walking, I might want to conduct a Google search about “benefits of walking.” Or perhaps I look for a local MeetUp group that walks in my neighborhood. Maybe I ask around my circles of friends, family, and colleagues—who else walks? Can I walk with you? And so on…you get the gist of it.
My last tip for this person and ALL OF US (myself included), is to DEFINE and remember our WHY. Why do we want to exercise in the first place? Why does it truly matter? So what if I lose weight? Why does it matter? After we define our why we must hold it dearly to our hearts because THE ANSWER TO OUR WHY keeps us MOTIVATED. It really does. I usually probe my clients heavily when answering and uncovering their why. I don’t settle for “to lose weight” or “to fit into my pants” or “to look better.” I really want (you) to know why all of that matters to YOU. Sometimes tears surface when we get to the heart of our why.
For me, it’s two fold. First, food and nutrition are important to me. I love to eat, I don’t like being hungry, and I hate for others to be hungry and unable to afford the cost of a basic, healthy meal. As I continue to grow and reach my first financial goal as a professional business, I will begin to collaborate and financially partner with local non-profits that provide healthy meal options and education to families and individuals in need. Second, I simply do NOT want to become a statistic! Black women are at the top of almost every chart that lists demographic groups hit the hardest by various chronic diseases. I want to proactively do my best to stay off of these lists! Check out some statistics…
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) listing of 10 Leading Causes of Death for African Americans
Check out the CDC’s lists for other ethnic and special populations
Another comprehensive listing of various chronic diseases prevalent in specific ethnic groups
So, in a nutshell, it is my goal to stick around and hang out for a while on this planet called Earth for a long time. I would like to see my little 11 month old nephew grow up into a man and ACTIVELY participate in all of the fun things to enter his life in the years to come! Plus, I want to continue to have as many options as possible that require mobility of my body. I actually enjoy moving and doing things. Go figure! (smile)
In conclusion, I leave you with a simple, yet complex question. What’s the answer to your WHY?
Brehm, B. (2004). Successful fitness motivation strategies. Human Kinetics, 21-40. Champaign, IL.