How Working Out 365 Days In a Row Transformed My Productivity

For those of you unfamiliar with the term, I basically felt like a vegetating potato.


Justine Du

3 years ago | 2 min read

So, I’ve never been the super self-conscious type, but when the pandemic hit last March (has it been a year already?), to say that I felt schlumped would definitely be an understatement. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, I basically felt like a vegetating potato.

With my senior year at UCLA halted, my friends and I all moved back home; everything seemed to slip away. To make matters worse, I wasn’t happy with the way I looked or even how I felt. New Years has just passed, and we all have those friends who oh-so-fervently chase after their Resolutions only to give up 2 weeks out (heck, you and I have probably been one of those people too).

And for my Resolution, well, I truly did want to be more physically fit. Not anything crazy, I still don’t consider myself a gym rat, but I wanted to at least feel confident and be able to reasonably maintain good health.

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Though, I did know that slapping a long term goal on my to-do list would be too much all at once, and you bet that goal would never be crossed off (I’m a product designer, I know a tidbit or two about how humans work).

Visual representation of all the days I’ve worked out (green circles)

Fast forward a few days, my roommate and I decided it would be fun to keep each other accountable for our Resolutions.

So we found HabitShare, a social habit tracker to track habits with friends for extra accountability.

It was originally downloaded for sh**s and giggles, but the more I did it, the better I felt. It’s true that ticking off checkboxes is just an unexplainable life pleasure, trust me. Not only that, but week by week, I was able to visually see my progress grow.

And “week by week” turned into “month by month,” and soon into a whole year (not a day skipped can you believe it!!).

It’s kind of crazy how viewing this long term goal as a subset of smaller goals and day-by-day checkmarks magically motivated me.

And that wasn’t even all, because I got busier once work started in the summer. I had to shift my schedule so I could still allow time for my 30-minute body burns.

So I started waking up at 7:30am (I know, crazy). It was brutal, to say the least, but the shocking thing was that I got used to it so quickly. From lounging around until 11am to waking up daily at 7:30am, it seemed insane that I started this new habit so easily.

From then on, waking up routinely at 7:30am led to healthier eating habits, which led to more productive mornings, more quality time with friends and family, more time to enjoy leisure activities (I started golfing lol), and the list goes on and on…

Little did I know a year back that just a small habit could lead to a bunch of cool new habits. I’ve never felt better about myself, and more importantly, I don’t need to feel so guilty about eating AYCE (all you can eat) KBBQ or hot pot anymore. Which, let’s be honest, was my all-time #1 motivator this entire time.

So give it a try, start small, start manageable. I’d love to hear what kinds of good habits you build :-)


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Justine Du







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