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Fitness and motivation / July 14, 2016

The Most Powerful Science Backed Hacks To Ensure You Get And Most Importantly Stay Active

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Do you want to know the easiest and most powerful way to reach your fitness goals?

1. Reframe the idea surrounding why you want to be active.
Research has shown that the common reasons people give for exercising, like weight loss, improved body image and even strength and health goals could be a cause of why people find it hard to form the habit needed to actually reach these goals. The trick is to reframe your thinking so you focus on the short term "feel good rewards" exercise gives you. Read more here
 
2. Make a commitment 'out loud' every week.
Now you are focussed on the feel good rewards of a great workout a simple trick to increase your chances of forming that life long healthy habit is to make a commitment 'out loud' every week.

Why does this work? It's due to the behavioural psychology of cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance refers to a situation involving conflicting attitudes, beliefs or behaviours. When someone believes one thing, but acts in a different way, it produces a feeling of discomfort and your brain wants to alter your attitudes, beliefs or behaviours to reduce the discomfort and restore balance. There is a great example study on the effects of  cognitive dissonance on immediate behavioural change by entitled, "Using Cognitive Dissonance to Encourage Water Conservation."

Basically if you make a commitment to exercise and you don't follow it up, your subconscious brain will look for ways to align your behaviour so you are more likely to go out of your way to find a way of exercising.

A study by a leading fitness research company found that exercisers who made a commitment to attend a workout the next week were 3 times more likely to remain active that those who didn't make a commitment. 

So each week make a commitment 'out loud' to someone on when you plan to exercise. It can be a friend, family member, your Move Coach, gym buddy, whoever.  Then, if something gets in the way of you fulfilling that commitment, you have the power of your subconscious and conscious brain (which is now focused on wanting the immediate  'feel good' reward) working together to ensure you get that workout in, whether that's finding a different class to attend, or doing a short at home workout or a quick jog around the block!

So there you have it , two very simple and proven psychological methods to help you stay active. Just focus on the immediate feel good rewards and then let someone know when you plan to exercise!

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Tags: Fitness and motivation

Laura

Written by Laura

After 3 years of excess at uni took a serious toll on my waistline and wellbeing, I found that a love for strength training, HIIT and spin classes were key to keeping me healthy and happy. I'm at the forefront of finding out and creating awesome stuff about health, fitness and happiness for our Movers and when I'm not at work I love nothing more than pizza and prosecco in the sun with friends. What motivates me? Knowing that life is short...

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