A Basque in Boise

21 days to make or break a habit

21 days to habit change new ftI’m on my fourth one, 17 more to go.

It seems like light-years ago now, but there was a time when I was a gym-rat. I often try to remember what crazy force would posses me to get up at 5:00 and be on the treadmill by 5:30 am. Then I’d go lifting at lunchtime or after work. No matter how hard I concentrate, I always draw a blank. That chapter of my life has long been gone and replaced by complacency, more sleep, and a 20-minute walk around H-P if I’m lucky.

The last few months were somehow stressful with selling and buying the houses. Spending nearly a month vacationing in the Basque Country didn’t help my fitness situation either. Visits to the gym became few and far between, until I realized last week that I didn’t remember the last time I stepped on the elliptical or raised a weight. However, I refuse to become a couch potato. One thing is to live in Idaho and another to take it that seriously.

Every morning at 8:25 am, as I pull into the H-P parking lot for another joyous day of software troubleshooting in the Indigo press world, Dr. Sanjay Gupta comes on the air with always interesting bits to “help you live a better life”. On Monday, he talked about making and breaking habits, how it only takes 21 days for your brain to get accustomed to doing or not doing something. That same day I started running again.

Ok, maybe if was more like fast walking, and I didn’t even reach the 30-minute mark. I guess it’s fine anyway, the most I will be able to spare is 40 minutes at lunch. I used to exercise for 1 or 2 hours when I was fit, and eventually I wouldn’t even break a sweat because I was in great shape. The advantage now is that I don’t have to shake up my body that hard to give it a serious workout. And when I say shake up, I mean literally. I’ll never know how it feels to have buns of steel; not even surgery will help at this point. When I jog, I can feel my bum go up and down with every stride. I can almost hear it move.

I guess I could run with headsets to the rhythm of music so I wouldn’t, saving myself at the same time the agony of listening to my panting getting louder as the minutes tick. Slowly tick. But I have two wireless sets that got lost amid the mess that is moving. I’m hoping that they’ll magically reappear when I least expect it, although I’ll probably break down eventually and get a new one, just like I did with the iron. I know it’s there. I took it from the old house with my own hands and placed it somewhere in the new one. Then I figured it was easier to stop by the Fred Meyer, where they have everything neatly arranged in isles by category, than venture into the black hole of my garage when I really needed to iron my dress.

I forgot my gym bag today. I truly hope strolling on the fifth day still counts for habit making.

Thanks for passing by: ↓

Michel HACALA Aitzol Azurtza Diana Mark Bieter Donald

4 thoughts on “21 days to make or break a habit

  1. Donald

    Gupta is wrong, I have been working for over 25 years and it has not become an habit; I could quit in a second.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.