Try 'Habit Stacking' To Help You Stick To A Workout Routine

Adding a new workout routine can be challenging whether you're working out at home or at the gym. While it's common knowledge that fitness benefits overall well-being, sometimes habits don't stick. But a new behavioral neuroscience strategy — habit stacking — is making it easy to achieve those gains at the gym while simultaneously enjoying the process. Also known as habit staining, the strategy involves attaching small new activities to habits you've already established (via Esquire). This will eliminate procrastination, and link a new habit with a preexisting trigger.

When it comes to working out, James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, suggests using this formula: "After/before I [fill in the blank with current habit], I will [fill in the blank with new habit]." For instance, before grabbing coffee first thing in the morning, consider going on a walk/run first. It doesn't have to be a long walk or run; feel free to start off small since the goal is to build a new fitness habit that you can sustain. This is your foundation so it's important not to overwhelm yourself (per Women's Health).

The best fitness tips to create more movement

In order to effectively habit stack to implement workout routines, there are two major components you need. According to a 2002 study, creating a specific exercise plan (where and when) and setting intentions can improve exercise frequency.

"There will be days when pure willpower just isn't enough to achieve your goals," personal trainer Kristina Centenari tells Women's Health. That's where relying on habits and prioritizing a fitness lifestyle comes into play.

Starting with your diet, make sure you're eating plenty of protein and drinking lots of water. Take care of your sleep hygiene by being consistent with your sleep schedule and by sleeping in dark quiet rooms (via Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

Be in touch with what type of recovery you need – active or passive recovery. In addition, warm up every time before you work out (via Women's Health). Don't forget to mix up your cardio and strength training exercises to have a well-balanced exercise regimen, points out St. Mary's Healthcare System.