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Starting a New Routine

Jan 02, 2013

As I finish 2012 and start 2013, I find myself reflecting on the past year.  I think it is natural.  What did I accomplish and what might I change?  I run every day.  Yes, every day.  I have for years; it is just how I start the day.  Some may think it is good and others crazy; it works for me.  But, that is the only exercise I routinely do.  As the years go on, I feel myself getting stiffer and less strong so I think it is important that I add some strengthening and stretching.  As a physical therapist, I ask people to do these things every day.  But, the truth is I enjoy running and don’t enjoy stretching or strength training.  How can I get myself to do these things?  Is there something in your life that you think you should change?  Would you like to devote some time to physical exercise or meditation to stay physically healthy; brain exercises to stay mentally healthy; or time organizing your life, doing relaxation exercise, or something else for your emotional health?

I want to change my routine.  Is this a New Year’s resolution?  I don’t want it to be; I know they often don’t work.  I have tried to add these exercises into my routine before without success.  I need a good plan, one I can accomplish.  On my run yesterday, I got a plan that I think will work. I am going to do five and five on five.  I am going to spend five minutes stretching and five minutes doing strengthening, five days each week.  I know that doesn’t sound like much but I really want to be successful.  If I only add five minutes of each, it is still 25 minutes that I wasn’t doing before.  We ask patients to set behavioral goals all the time.  If a patient made this a goal, would I think it was enough?  If they could be successful, I would.  How much time can you realistically devote to your activity?  How many days each week?

I do know from past successes that I need to track my new activity.  I have to be held accountable to be successful.  I will start by writing it into my schedule.  I finish most things on my schedule and few that aren’t.  So, on my list of things to do, I am going to put “S” twice.  I can circle each when I have finished my five minutes.  I think this is going to work!  What can you do to increase the likelihood of changing your routine?  I would love to hear.  I think this is helpful to us personally and to help the patients we work with.  How have you found success and what hasn’t worked for you?  I am off to get my watch and start my five!

I wish you all a happy, healthy, peaceful, and successful 2013.

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