What if you have never hiked a mile in your life? So start dreaming, but don’t be a daydreamer. Take action. Walk outside your door and down to the end of the block. That’s it. It is a start.
Ok, what if you just hate the whole idea of hiking. Fine! You can still exercise. You can find something, anything to get the blood pumping.
It can start with dreaming. Planning what you are going to do. Got it down on paper. Pull out all the stops. Now use that dreaming to motivate yourself through what Tony Robbins calls the “Dickens Process.” Have you heard of it? Well, first you look at the present and ask yourself what you are missing out on and how exercise would help you. Then take yourself back into the past five or ten years and experience how not exercising has hurt you. Then take yourself into the future, five, ten, twenty years, and see how not exercising has hurt you. I am oversimplifying this process. The questions you ask yourself are critical, but it works.
If you want to make it a habit you need to have the motivation, the ability, and a prompt. That comes from one of the three big books on habits. I think it is BJ Fogg’s book.
Make the first exercise you do small. Really small. One pushup. Yes, just one. And after you do it celebrate! Really celebrate. No, not with a bag of fries or a bowl of ice cream. Jump up and down and shout. Feel it. Get excited. Over one push up? Yes! It will reinforce the habit. I like what Jordan Peterson says. He says to make it small enough that you would be willing to do it. Then you can add to it. Two pushups. Walk around the whole block.
Do this with your diet too. I make a lot of noise about exercise, but you can out eat your exercise no matter how much exercise you are doing. I used to run fifty to sixty miles a week, week after week, month after month. However, I ate peanut butter and toast every morning. Not one slice of toast, at least four. Not one tablespoon of peanut butter, but I had it slathered on the toast. I ate fast food too. So I stayed far fatter than I would have been if I paid any attention to diet.
And I hope you like to hike. If not just start small. Go hiking!