Maintaining a Habit

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Wednesday’s Workout
For time:
Run 1 mile
Row 2K
Run 1 mile

… and coming Thursday
“Bear Complex”
5 rounds of the sequence:
7 reps each of:
1 Power Clean
1 Front squat
1 Push Press
1 Back Squat
1 Push Press

Rest between sets as needed. Goal is max load in a set. I discovered accidentally the other day just how easy it is to fall out of a good habit. I gave up Diet Coke, for real, for good, entirely, a few months ago. After years of intermittently giving it up or simply cutting back to “reasonable” amounts, I finally came to the conclusion that the daily physical pain I was in was due to Diet Coke. I stopped drinking it; the pain stopped. I was once and for all convinced I shouldn’t drink it, and for the first time ever it was easy to give it up and not look back. I missed the bubbles, but I didn’t miss the pain.

On Christmas Eve Winslow and I went for a 5 mile hike with a group of people up and around Multnomah Falls. On the way back we treated ourselves to lunch at Burgerville (if you don’t know Burgerville, check it out if you travel in the Pacific Northwest – they are fast food, but they source local, sustainable, organic meat and produce). I was halfway through my meal when I looked down and realized I had consumed half of a Diet Coke. I hadn’t even realized I had gotten it and been drinking it until it was half gone! We hadn’t been to a Burgerville since before I quit Diet Coke. I guess I was just in automatic mode and got what I always got. Somehow I had walked to the soda fountain, sat down, and drank half the cup before noticing.

The two days after that my elbow joint ached for the first time in months. I don’t think it’s a coincidence. It’s all the more proof to me that I can’t tolerate the stuff anymore. And it was a real eye-opener to the power of decades of habit still deep in my brain. Even though giving up Diet Coke was “easy” this time, it still requires being present to my choice to continue to override the old default.




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