I have a number of friends who are starting/doing Jillian’s 30 Day Shred or the P90X workout videos. I admire the heck outta these people. And I envy their discipline. Now anyone who knows I head out to the gym 5 days a week might think it’s silly of me to envy someone who is staying home working out to a video. But you’d be wrong.
There is NO WAY that I have self-discipline to stay home and consciously decide to stop all the things I have to do -and all the distractions that pull at me – and consciously decide to do a workout at home. I don’t even fool myself anymore by looking at/renting/buying these videos.
When I joined the gym, it took my almost a month to simply walk in and talk to a sales counselor. When I signed up Mike did not let me leave without getting a trainer (the fabulous Guido) and making sure I had my first appointment set. For several weeks, the only time I went to the gym was when I was paying for a workout. Money=Great Motivator. Those first few workouts began to get my into the habit of going in.
Soon, Guido suggested that I had come far enough along that I could do a third workout on my own. It happened at a time when I needed/wanted a reason to head out of the house for a while on the weekend, and my Sunday afternoon workout was born. Desire increased the chance of my going and the habit became stronger.
As the winter rains rolled in, limiting my chances of walking outside, I headed to the gym 5 days a week to get that cardio in. And while I was there, I might as well do some stability work …
So the habit was born slowly over time and grew into something greater. Now part of planning every week is deciding which days I’ll hit the gym, what I’ll work on. Planning my workouts is fun.
How would I start and enforce a habit that lets me stay home? That requires me to consciously interrupt what I’m doing to stand in my family room and sweat while watching TV or watching the same thing on my laptop? What would be penalty for forgetting? for postponing?
The only penalty would be another chance to beat up on myself for being a failure. And there would be nobody to counteract those discussions. No reinforcement for doing good; only negatives. So this would never work for me.
Yet for so many others this seems like an easier choice than going to the gym. For those who feel that way, I so admire your personal fortitude and discipline.