If you’ve ever tried to break a habit or … as is the case with mine & Dr. Darling‘s MalmöMilen 2014 quest … to form a new one, you’ve probably heard or read somewhere that it takes three weeks of deliberate effort to do it. Well, I feel pretty confident I can call “bull-shit” on that theory right now.
With the exception of the one rest day we allowed ourselves each week (and even the “rest” days included the Burpee Challenge and usually a fairly good amount of walking or biking), the Swede and I logged an intense cross-training or cardio workout daily during the month of July … and July is a long month, people!
And yes, by the 3rd week there were occasional days when we actually looked forward to the workout … or more accurately … the feeling of accomplishment upon finishing it. But for the most part, and to be completely and brutally honest, the thing we look forward to most is getting it the hell over with.
So when does the habit part kick-in, exactly? When will we get to that place where it’s just a routine part of our day like making coffee or brushing our teeth? And at what point does the endorphin rush come into play? I’m still waiting for that, too, dammit! Which is not to say that we haven’t noticed the benefits. We are both feeling fitter, have more muscle strength and endurance, and are seeing a difference in the way our clothes are fitting us.
But the scales aren’t moving downward as fast as we’d like, or at least as fast as we feel the effort warrants … even though we’ve made healthy changes in our food choices, too. And we definitely aren’t finding much “fun” in it, aside from the actual reporting to the rest of Team Sopherocious and the virtual pats-on-the-back we get from our comrades-in-sweat. (You guys ROCK and you know who you are!)
That’s why it’s so critical that this fitness routine becomes a habit … something that just happens automatically without either one of us having to think about it too much. Because at this stage … a full (long) month into it … there are still way too many days when we have to push or prod each other into going to the gym or setting up the DVD so that Jillian Michaels can harangue us through the latest level of the 30-Day Shred.
And if you think I’m exaggerating the challenge we feel we are up against, here is the most positive thing that the usually sunny Swede could say about this lifestyle change so far:
“Well, at least it’s making the summer feel a lot longer.”