My living room is turning into a gym.
Exercise mats, bands, yoga blocks, foam rollers, weights, massage tools, and plenty of space to move around.
Over the next few weeks this setup will expand to include a balance beam, kettlebells, tactical sandbag, push up handles, a pull up tower, and medicine balls.
The couch and television no longer occupy the central territory. They’ve been de-emphasized.
Moved to the edges.
A nightly TV habit had slowly taken root in our life, and it had to change.
It was too easy to lie on the couch and relax with the wife in the evening. Just too tempting.
We needed more movement, less sitting and lying about.
Rearranging our physical environment immediately changed our behavior.
The spaces we spend time in are a mirror of our inner life. They reflect back to us our priorities and reaffirm our identity.
Now when we walk by or enter the living room, we are reminded that movement, fitness, and health are important. So important, that we’ve arranged our main living space entirely around that pursuit.
The mechanism behind this has been illuminated by Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit. He describes a 4 part “neurological loop” comprised of a cue, craving, response, and reward.
The cue is some signal that activates our desires (craving), which leads to a response (acting on and fulfilling our desire), which leads to a reward (the release of chemicals like dopamine in the brain that make us feel momentarily satisfied).
In this case, the cue is seeing the living room gym. The desire (craving) is for the rewarding sensations and mental state of satisfaction generated from massaging, stretching, moving, and exercising (the response).
Our television watching has dropped dramatically—almost to zero.
Now, instead of an hour of TV, it’s an hour (often more) of moving, stretching, self-massage, qigong… whatever feels good.
By the end of 2019, instead of having watched 300+ hours of television, we’ll have done as much (or more) movement practice.
What kind of difference do you think 300 more hours of movement will make in our health and fitness levels?