Welcome fellow squatters, skippers, smilers and the like to the Fitness Together Back Bay blog.
You may have seen an FT Back Bay blog before, in the same or slightly different context, but this little diddy is here to stay. Weekly notes of hints, help and what’s happenin’ in the studio you’ve grown to love/hate (it’s complicated).
Why the revamp and pledge to consistency now?
Well...it’s a New Year and what’s better time to do so...amiright?
I’m sure you had your fair share of inspired thoughts when the clock struck midnight almost 4 weeks ago:
“A new start! This is the year I floss everyday and, and, drink 8oz of water every hour! Oh and meditate every morning before my 20minute jog! And heck, now is time to begin that pottery class!”
On January 1st those thoughts may have still be ringing vibrantly in your head (along with the dull reminder of champagne if you were at the same party as us...)
You probably had some wherewithal to tackle these ambitions, knowing that all it takes is a change, or creation, of a habit to rock your New Year. You may have even heard that this is pretty easy, because of course, there’s a favorite little factoid that a habit takes 21 days to form.
I’m writing on day 29 of this new year. Given such factoid, I trust you meditated this morning before hittin’ the pavement with clean gums and hydrated skin and can’t wait to get back and sip coffee out of the newly crafted mug you made in pottery class last night.
See, that fun “fact”, rejoiced by motivational speakers, teachers, managers, even, um, personal trainers, sounds pretty darn appealing. 21 days to create a new habit, who CAN’T do that?!
Well, most humans.
Because of course, that fun fact is not much of a truth at all. That’s right, this common belief was fueled by an observation made by a plastic surgeon in the 1960s who noticed most of his patients took about 21 days to get used to a new er, aesthetic feature (or lack thereof.) After getting quickly snatched up by the aforementioned inspirational speakers and personal trainers, this loose observation became part of a mainstream pressure to dominate a new habit in 3 weeks.
The thing that stinks about such a well known belief is that when you fall short, ya feel a bit defeated. Those 21 days pass, you’re only flossing 2 days a week and those sneakers have hit the pavement fewer days than happily admitted. Guilt and frustration are the only things you’re sipping out of that Starbucks cup (who really has time to make a MUG?!)
The lovely little truth is that new practices, habits and ways of life can take a heckuva lot more time than 21 days. Every person and their desired change is different. What may take one person 3 months could take you half of the year. A relatively small change may be a bit easier to master than a complete lifestyle overhaul. 21 days just sounds pretty...pretty freakin’ unrealistic that is.
So instead of looking at the last 29 days and seeing already-failed resolutions, perhaps reflect on that fact that at this time last year you didn’t even OWN sneakers and only got those chompers flossed at the dentist. While there is certainly a lot more work to be done, you are trying and improving and that, our fellow squatters, is to be recognized.
So let’s raise that plastic coffee cup and say it together, “CHEERS!”
Cheers to a New Year, small improvements on more days than not and most importantly, to YOU.