Is It Time for a Habit Audit?

by | Mar 22, 2024 | Mindset, Training

Today as we recorded this week’s podcast, I was talking about the fact that my knee is experiencing a bit of a tweak these last few days. It’s nothing new or super serious-feeling, but it is serving as a reminder that I can’t take my general health/working legs for granted. To that end, Peter has mentioned using my Normatech compression boots a couple of times. Until right now—as I write this while wearing them—I didn’t listen. But all of that got me thinking about habits, and when we may be in dire need of a habit audit.

I used to use the compression boots all the time. I made it a daily habit that was part of my afternoon writing process. But as with many habits, regardless of how useful they are, the busier life got, the more often the boots fell by the wayside. They were too much bulk to bring with us when we traveled in the van, so they stayed home all winter. Even in the fall, I rarely made time for them. But I know that my legs feel better when I do use them. Inflammation feels lower, I don’t feel as puffy. It’s a relaxing way to get some writing done, and actually, pretty effective work-wise because it forces me to stay in place for an hour. No getting up to check laundry or get distracted.

And still… I put off using the boots.

It got me thinking about habits. How many good habits do you start, keep up for a while, and let go of because life is temporarily busy… and then never get back to them? I talked about when we ran out of AG1 while we were traveling last month—my morning hydration habit completely vanished, even though I could have continued to drink regular water in the morning. The second the cue was gone, so was my commitment. The same is true of the boots: I can trace it back to when we had some renos being done, and we stashed them in the laundry closet to make room for all the contractor’s stuff. When they were finished, the boots never came back out.

Luckily, getting home last week after a few weeks away helped me review my daily habits. AG1 and hydration are back in the morning, right before I do my morning yoga and core (a routine that has stuck through thick and thin). My twice-weekly strength and following my training plan are still in place. We walk DW every afternoon as our end-of-day ritual. I finally got a sit/stand desk that lets me switch between the two seamlessly when I am at my desk. And now, the boots are coming back. (PS: Yes, I do think the boots are worth the splurge if you do a lot of training… especially if you work from home. Full review here.)

Habits are a weird thing—there is such a thing as habit creep. You start adding far too many recovery modalities, wellness rituals and routines, training stimuli, et cetera, into the mix and before you know it, you’re overwhelmed and can’t make time for any of them. Or you make time for all of them, at the cost of you actually enjoying any part of your day. There’s a fine balance, especially as a working athlete, of finding things that work, but not so many that you overcrowd your calendar and end up worse off as a result. A good check in: Are your habits costing you scheduled training time that you’re missing in favor of things like sauna or cold plunge? Are you skipping meals because you’re using mostly supplements (i.e whey protein) for your nutrition? Are you cutting back on sleep to make room for recovery modalities? And are you skimping on things that bring you joy (i.e time with friends) in order to rigidly maintain your habits? All of those are good signs that it’s time to do a habit audit—you may need to remove something rather than add more in!

So, as we transition into spring, maybe this is a good chance for you to do a daily/weekly habit check in. Has anything slipped off of your radar that should come back? Are there any gadgets or gizmos you used to love using for recovery but are now collecting dust? Or maybe, you actually let a couple things go that needed to go, and that’s a good thing!


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