Here is one real reason health and fitness habits crumble...
When it comes to health, most people focus just on fitness, or nutrition (ideally both).
But that's just two aspects of your health, which is far more complex and wonderful than just those two areas.
To support your fitness and nutrition habits, you need other key elements:
- your environment (systems, people, surroundings etc) set up to support your goals and reduce the need for willpower
- you need solid sleep, stress management and recovery skills.
The inner critic lambasting you that you're lazy or broken IS trying to help you out (it think by criticizing you it'll get you going, and keep you away from feel shame etc). but other parts of your will be struggling if you've not have enough sleep, the stress in your body is unregistered and un-dealt with and your recovery isn't on point.
So, there's not one magic fix-all answer here, but there ARE some coping skills you can start to integrate to make it that much easier to sustain your health and fitness habits:
- get a solid bedtime routine. Yes, it might feel childish, but the science and your body say otherwise.
- practice mindful eating (removing or decreasing distractions, focus on the satisfaction and connection in food)
- introduce breathing practices to help your body and nervous system relax back from a highly activating busy day
- brain dump your thoughts in a journal, voice note or note on your phone
- cultivate a flexible, growth mindset (maybe even do some inner work - drop me a message if you want to learn about how IFS can help with this). Perhaps dig into why it's hard to show up for yourself/spend time on yourself/relationship to food and body etc.
If you fortify your stress, sleep and recovery management, then you'll provide a much more solid foundation to your other health habits when life gets lifey (which it ALWAYS does) and throws a minor or major upheaval your way.
And a final note: everything above does NOT need to be on or off. That list of ideas can sound like the 'perfect' way to do things. But you'll not be able to sustain perfect (would we want to? Sounds exhausting trying to control everything like that).
Instead, think of it like a menu, and operating on a scale: 0 is no behaviours that support your goals and 10 is every choice supports your goals. There might be something big or small you can do every day off that menu. And there is a TON of value in being a 4, 5, or 6 on the scale. And the next question is not how to be a 10, but therefore how to move that to a 3, 4 or 5 on the scale.
I challenge you to look for very small opportunities.
That's how you build a strong foundation.
Brick by brick.
Join my mailing list for weekly blog updates, plus other news, offers and need-to-know tidbits. Maybe a discount or two. Just saying. Plus, you can get a free copy of my 7-day Getting Started Guide. Join the fam!