Fitness Habits | Amaresh Ojha

Summary of: Fitness Habits: Breaking the Barriers to Fitness
By: Amaresh Ojha


Embark on a transformative journey towards a healthier lifestyle with the book summary of ‘Fitness Habits: Breaking the Barriers to Fitness’ by Amaresh Ojha. This summary dives into why numerous individuals fall off track on their fitness plans and reveals secrets to creating veritable fitness habits. Learn about the cue-routine-reward loop that significantly impacts habit formation, and find inspiration for cultivating intrinsic motivation to keep you on track. The book summary also shares practical tips to start small with achievable goals and offers suggestions for making workouts fun and engaging. Discover how turning fitness into a habit can contribute to a lifetime of better physical and mental wellbeing.

The Secret to Making Fitness a Lifelong Habit

Many people understand the significance of exercise, yet they struggle with incorporating it into their daily lives. A study conducted in India reveals that approximately 60% of people stop their fitness routine within two months. Stress-inducing work habits lead people to gain weight and face health issues. Individuals often lack guidance, motivation, and set overly ambitious goals. The journey of fitness often feels like a burden and unfamiliar territory to these people, causing them to quit before seeing any benefit. The best way to make fitness a part of daily life is by incorporating it into your routine, making it second nature. The focus should shift from achieving a fitness goal to finding intrinsic pleasure in the action itself. Two types of motivation, the need (extrinsic) and the desire (intrinsic), drive people to work out and develop a lifelong fitness habit. Making fitness a lifelong habit requires a change in behavior. It is like brushing your teeth; you don’t decide to do it; you just do it. As you see results and get gratification from exercising, the progress you make pushes you forward.

The Neuroscience of Habits

Habits are formed through a neurological loop of cue, routine, and reward that creates a subconscious pattern of behavior. The anticipation of the reward, not the reward itself, releases dopamine in the brain, reinforcing the habit. To establish a new habit, create a cue that triggers the routine, such as setting a specific time to exercise. Anticipating the reward is the key to maintaining a habit, as those who crave the reward are more likely to sustain their routine. For example, one person was able to stick to an exercise routine by joining group classes, satisfying their craving for socializing and energy. Understanding the neuroscience behind habits can help individuals break bad habits and develop healthier ones.

The Truth About Forming an Exercise Habit

Developing a fitness habit is not an easy task. While it has been widely believed that it takes 21 days to adapt to new circumstances, research shows that it actually takes much longer – around 90 days – to form a sustainable exercise routine. People who are new to exercise need to see results to maintain the momentum to continue, whereas regular exercisers view fitness as a priority and find long-term health benefits to be more motivating than instant gratification. To adopt an exercise habit, one must have persistence and patience and find cues that work for them. It is not just about forming the habit, however, but also about maintaining it, which can be easier. Once the routine becomes a part of one’s lifestyle, emotional and physical benefits from the workouts become evident, and the habit becomes normalized.

Fitness Habits

Developing sustainable fitness habits can be challenging. Starting small with manageable targets and focusing on small improvements is key. Celebrating small triumphs can help increase your motivation as you progress towards larger goals. It’s also important to ask yourself why you want to exercise and make it fun to stay motivated. Choosing a cue that is obvious and easily accessible can also help make it a habit. By starting small and sticking to a routine every day, fitness can become a rewarding experience in the long run.

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