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How to Form Healthy Habits and Make Them Last

Posted By Chris Freytag On June 16, 2009 @ 8:43 pm In Fitness, Health & Wellness, Healthy Eating, Weight Loss | 7 Comments


It takes about 60 days for a human to form a long-term habit, studies have shown. So why do so many Americans fail on their diet and exercise plans? They don’t give it two weeks, much less four. We are an instant-gratification society that wants quick results or forget it!

But we have a good three months of summer left. That’s plenty of time to set a goal of forming a healthy habit [1] or two.

Be realistic and take small steps

Think about a habit you tried to help your kids learn. For example, brushing their teeth every night and morning, saying please and thank you, or putting dirty laundry in the hamper. I don’t know about you, but it took me more than two weeks to teach my kids to form the habit of brushing their teeth, and I actually still remind all three of them from time to time. So why then would we think that as adults we can change our eating habits [2] or exercise routines [3] overnight, without getting crabby or going crazy? What usually happens once we realize it isn’t as easy as we planned? WE GIVE UP!

Based on psychological studies, we need to be realistic and try to be consistent by taking baby steps. You can’t expect the texture and taste of whole grains [4] to be instantly appealing if you are a Wonder Bread lover. You can’t expect to be a constant veggie muncher if you haven’t touched one without hollandaise in years. You can’t expect to run five miles a day if you haven’t run in five years. Making changes [5] to your lifestyle habits takes time, and you need to do it gradually.

Start THIS summer by vowing to …

  • Take a morning or evening walk [6] since there are more hours of daylight.
  • Eat five fruits and veggies [7] a day with the abundance of fresh produce available.
  • Strength train [8] two days a week.

You are the one in charge of creating your lifestyle habits, so remember it takes discipline, desire and time to see the results you are looking for. Use this summer to form a few new healthy habits [9]!

Stay healthy,


www.chrisfreytag.com [10]

Just Give it Two Weeks!  Check out my new book 2-Week Total Body Turnaround [11]

Article printed from Gaiam Blog: http://blog.gaiam.com

URL to article: http://blog.gaiam.com/how-to-form-healthy-habits-and-make-them-last/

URLs in this post:

[1] healthy habit: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Top-15-Ways-to-Be-Healthier.html

[2] eating habits: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/9WaystoBuildaHealthierRelationshipwithFood.html

[3] exercise routines: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/How-to-Stick-with-a-Fitness-Routine-5-ways-to-stay-motivated-to-exercise-regularly.html

[4] whole grains: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/3-Delicious-Ways-to-Get-More-Whole-Grain-in-Your-Life.html

[5] Making changes: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/How-Strong-Is-Your-Change-Muscle.html

[6] walk: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/WalkingTheBestWorkout.html

[7] fruits and veggies: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Top-Produce-to-Buy-Organic.html

[8] Strength train: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Secrets-of-Successful-Strength-Training.html

[9] healthy habits: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/MarielHemingwayonherbookHealthyLivingfromtheInsideOut.html

[10] www.chrisfreytag.com: http://www.chrisfreytag.com

[11] 2-Week Total Body Turnaround: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Get-Lean-Muscle-Faster-with-Slow-Eccentric-Strength-Moves.html

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