You might have seen my post on habit trackers, which are a great way of keeping up our motivation when we’re trying to adopt a positive habit. Well, one of the things I was tracking last month was whether I did some movement every day and it worked so well for me that I thought I’d share with you how I went about it.
So first of all, I set up the habit tracker so that I could have that visual of an unbroken line of ticks (if all went well). I recognised, though, that a problem I often have is not being able to think what to do when I find myself with a bit of time to do it in – or not being able to decide between options. (I’m one of those people who are definitely better not to be given options – ever!) I approached this in 3 complementary ways:
- I listed the options in broad, general terms, such as walking, yoga, stretching, Dynamic Aging exercises, Move your DNA exercises, qi gung, dance, MovNat.
- I put together some YouTube playlists of exercise videos. I have one for yoga videos of different lengths, a dance one, one specifically for short morning practices, and a MovNat one. I plan to add a couple more, for example HIIT, Pilates and strength training – you can tell I got my favourites sorted out first!
- I went through my diary at the beginning of the week, looked at how much time I would have on different days and what opportunities those days might offer, and then wrote in what I would aim to do each day.
A typical week looked like:
- Monday (not a work day) – short morning yoga video, Melt class at lunch-time
- Tuesday (work day) – walking break at work, yoga class (I didn’t actually make the class, but at least I’d had a walk)
- Wednesday (busy work day) – walking break at work
- Thursday (half-day work) – YouTube dance video
- Friday (not a work day) – Move your DNA exercises
- Saturday – longer morning yoga video
- Sunday – long walk
This works on lots of levels for habit training – but particularly scheduling so the time is blocked off, and making it as easy as possible by having fun options at hand on the YouTube playlists. Of course I did miss a few sessions over the month, but overall I did a lot more movement, and more varied movement, than I usually do and I’m definitely inspired to keep going with it. I’m particularly enjoying the dance videos (although I have fallen through a few black holes while supposedly looking for beginner level dance videos and ending up watching amazing performances till way past my bedtime – have a look at this one – Uh-may-zing – this girl is clearly made of rubber!)
Making YouTube playlists is really easy and if you give it a go, please share them with us in the comments – I’m always looking for more inspiration!