How many times have you committed to making a healthy change in your life such as eating more vegetables, exercising regularly, getting more sleep... only to fall back into old habits?
Saying, "I have no will power, I can't stay on track"
"I've stuffed up and eaten a mars bar, so I may as well make the most of it and eat as much as I can and start again on Monday"
These are comments I get all the time from clients...
Rest assured, I have a RELAPSE PROOFING PLAN for you.
Step 1) Reflect on your journey and list the factors that will be MOST important for you to maintain your progress. Stick to three things that are KEY.
Step 2) Determine the indicators for your slips back into old unhelpful habits i.e. "slip markers". Slip markers may be a certain behaviour (e.g. when I stop cooking for myself), mindset (when I focus on work over physical activity), feeling (like I can't find motivation), comment from another person (GP saying "I'm starting to worry about your blood pressure again") etc.
So, what are three main slip markers for you? Write them down.
Step 3) What is your ACTION PLAN? Write down exactly what you will do when you notice important slip markers. The slip marker will trigger you into your action plan.
Your action plan may include;
a) Food, mindset, activity diaries
b) Regular support from a health professional or close friend/family member. Make it comprehensive so that you know exactly what to do to catch yourself BEFORE you fall.
It’s ok to mess up and try again. By slipping, catching yourself and getting back on track, you will build your resilience and confidence in your own ability.
Here is an example of my relapse proofing plan for my knee pain:
SLIP MARKERS >>>
· Noticing I'm not stretching each night
· I'm getting niggles of pain or tightness in my knee
Triggers me into my ACTION PLAN >>>
1. Go see a physio to reassess inflammation and get a plan for exercises and stretches specific to current condition.
2. Set alarm for nightly stretches and rolling.
3. Plan a minimum of two gym session per week specifically for my knee rehab exercises and fill week with non-knee loading activity (swimming, rowing, yoga).
This gives me the confidence to know that when I start slipping with my knee health, I know exactly what to do to recover again. It never slips back to a full on puffy knee, rest for two months, consider surgery situation again.
What a breath of fresh air!
Mandy Cripps, APD