The force of habit helps you stay slim

Routine workouts boost physical activity.

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iStock.com/Tatomm

Is having a set routine good or bad for you? For some people, the word routine is synonymous with boredom, habit and a lack of ideas. People talk more about bad habits than good ones. Those who have a set routine and act in a safe and reliable manner based on their experience are regarded as being proficient. On the other hand, the Brazilian author Paulo Coelho is credited as having said, “If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine; it is lethal”. A US study now suggests, however, that always exercising at the same time of the day can help you become more active. And it is well known that physical exercise keeps you fit and ensures you have a healthy body weight.

According to the American scientists’ findings, training habits can even increase physical activity. When evaluating data from the US National Weight Control Registry, researchers from the Alpert Medical School at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, found that not only do people who exercise regularly at a certain time of the day exercise more frequently during a week, they also exercise significantly longer and more intensively than those who train at irregular times.

In their study, the US researchers wanted to find out whether, and if so to what extent, the time when people exercise has any effect on maintaining weight loss. It is well known and has been proven that exercise and a balanced diet are basic prerequisites for achieving a healthy body weight. In this study, it was rather a question of clarifying whether the time at which the workout takes place is decisive for achieving or maintaining the desired weight loss.

The authors of the study therefore questioned 375 adults who had already successfully reduced their body weight by means of moderate to intensive physical training and had maintained their weight loss. The test persons had to record the time when they trained and how often they trained each week. The researchers found that those who regularly exercised at the same time of the day did so more often and for longer periods than those who exercised at different times. From this, the scientists concluded that a certain routine in physical activity results in more regular and intensive training - which in turn has a positive effect on health and body weight.

‘Old hands’ exercise for longer

In concrete terms, the US researchers found that 68 per cent of the study participants who had successfully reduced their weight and not put it on again afterwards usually trained at a regular time. As a rule, they also achieved the recommended 150 minutes of exercise a week: 86.3 per cent of those who trained to a set routine achieved this goal, compared with the figure of 74.2 per cent for those who exercised irregularly. The latter exercised on average for 285 minutes a week, while those test persons who always trained at the same time of the day achieved an average of 350 minutes.

It was noticeable that most of the study participants exercised in the morning, but according to the study directors this was of no significance for the success of the workout. From the researchers’ point of view, however, it is crucial to use the force of habit and turn exercise into a routine. In other words, they should make exercising regularly an automatic process. Without continuous physical activity, it is difficult to maintain a healthy body weight.

That is why, even after a successful Almased diet, it makes sense to maintain the success achieved by making exercise and sport a part of one’s daily routine. And if you want to stay on the safe side, you can back up the positive effect of the training with an Almased drink. That way there is no chance of adding superfluous pounds or experiencing the dreaded yo-yo effect.

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