EMS Workouts

Solutions for your Resolutions

Are you making New Year’s Resolutions? Do you remember the ones you set for 2022? How did it go? 

You may have heard of making S.M.A.R.T. goals: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. You may find some variations for what the A and R stand for but the idea is the same. Set a goal with a strategy. Yet somehow, given the increasing number of diabetes and obesity prevalence year after year, we, as a population are failing at making lasting healthy changes.

In my almost 15 years in the health, fitness, and wellness industries, one of the biggest pet peeves I’ve developed was seeing too many people using the “all or nothing” approach to making healthy changes to their lifestyle. Things like “Dry January” when you stop drinking for a month, or “Whole 30” when you only eat whole foods for 30 days, and so on. Many health and fitness companies capitalize on these concepts as “challenges” to jump start a new habit. 

Unfortunately, they typically have a very mixed success rate. They can be beneficial to show you what is possible, but these binary challenges tend to deviate so much from your regular habits that they become unsustainable. You can find statistics online for various fitness goals and their success rates, here’s one survey from 2013 about working out consistently as a resolution with a 73% failure rate.

Another pet peeve of mine is throwing arbitrary numbers of how long it takes to change a habit. Is it 21 days? Is it 66 days? I’m not sure where the 21 days comes from, maybe from wishful thinking, but the “66 days” comes from a psychology study from 2012. The full study is available here. 

The study had 82 participants, mostly female students from Europe, that chose a habit to change for 12 weeks. The outcome measured was automaticity which was based on a survey they created where participants reported performing the habit “without thinking too much about it”. The results were that it took some individuals 18 days to make a habit automatic and for others it took 254 days (estimated based on data provided since the actual study only ran for 84 days). Participants could choose their habit but it had to be a habit under certain conditions. Here’s an example one of the available habits students could choose from: 

Source: European Journal of Social Psychology.

Key Findings:

The higher the automaticity the easier it was for participants to stick to their habit. It took most participants around 66 days to finally select “not hard to do” in their surveys across all the various habits. However, I caution getting too attached to this number, as the other key findings are much more revealing.

A key finding from this study is that the more complex the habit, the longer it typically took to automate. For example “drinking water after lunch” is a lot easier to do than “going for a 15 minutes jog after dinner”. You most likely have access to water wherever you can eat, and drinking one glass of water is effortless, and feels good. Jogging for 15 minutes after dinner, requires some planning, not being too full, and is an actual physical effort.

Another key finding is that for certain habits repetition, especially earlier on, is much more important than time passing. This means that the more days in a row participants performed a habit, the more it stuck, even if they missed a day here and there. 

There’s a book I highly recommend called Atomic Habits by James Clear that goes deeper into this study and other strategies.

Top 8 tips to change a habit:

Below are my top 8 tips based on the research study above by Phillippa Lally, the Atomic Habits book, and all my years of experience working with people trying to change their habits: 

  1. Start small: especially at the beginning, start with something you know you can already do easily. It also sets a minimum standard that you know you can respect. If someone tells me they have time to exercise 5 days per week, I’ll usually start them with only 2 days. Why start at less than half? Because it is too easy not to do. 

Example: if you want to go hiking more often, start with a hike that you’ve done plenty of times that barely breaks a sweat and has great views. The next one, or the one after can be challenging, but for your first day of your new habit, make it very easy.

  1. Track your habit and progress it: write down what you intend to do, and how much of it you are doing, especially with exercise. Exercise needs to be consistent, but also needs to be progressed over time. 

Example: write down how many hikes you did last month, how long they were, use emojis to rate the difficulty, whatever applies, but it needs to be measured in order to progress it.

  1. Aim for small increases: you don’t need to set PR’s everyday. PR stands for personal record, often used in athletics. As long as you average better from week to week, or month to month, you’re on a good track. 

Example: if you decide to run 3x/week, there will inevitably be a day when your legs are tired, or you feel mentally fatigued, and won’t perform as well. This does not mean you’re regressing. Performing that run, even with a bad time, will be on average better than when you didn’t run at all.

  1. Only change one element at a time: the mind and body need to be challenged in order to “get better”. This doesn’t mean you should throw all the challenges you can think of at them at the same time. 

Example: if you decided to walk on the treadmill every day, try either walking faster as a progression OR at a steeper incline. But trying to increase the speed at the same time as raising the incline will become very difficult very quickly. If you do want to increase both, do so very mindfully.

  1. First, build the routine: habits don’t exist in a vacuum. When changing a habit, there is the habit itself, but also other elements around it that you don’t consider but are nonetheless important when building a routine. 

Example: going to the gym to lift weights 3x/week. You’re probably most concerned about the “lifting weights” part, but don’t neglect the “going to the gym” portion. If you don’t feel like lifting weights, still go to the gym! Use the sauna, stretch instead of lifting, walk instead of running, going there is maintaining a big part of the habit, and who knows, maybe by time you’re changed and standing on the workout floor, you’ll actually feel like lifting weights. Performing most of the habit gives you the best chances of maintaining consistency.

  1. Once established, tweak the routine: throughout my career I’ve had many questions about what’s “the best exercise for belly fat”, or what’s “the best thing to eat before/after a workout”, and so on. “The best” belongs to a binary, all or nothing, thought process. Rather than being preoccupied with what’s best, think of what’s next. 

Example: you are now lifting weights 3x/week as you intended in step 5. Great, look at your lifts and see what can be improved upon. Is it technique? Is it more weight? Is it more repetitions? Is it more sets? Is it a different tempo? Or is it a different exercise selection? As you can see, depending on the habit there may be a lot of criteria to choose from, and instead of worrying about what’s best, think of progressing down one path, see how far you get, and then change to a different path. 

  1. Identify as “insert goal here”: I’m against using labels in general, they’re confining and nobody likes to be “boxed” anywhere. However, I recognize the strength they can carry when it comes to positive traits. If you’re typically on time, you would identify as someone who is punctual, you probably feel proud about it, and strive to be on time most of the time. As a self-identified punctual person, if you’re late once to a meeting, you would probably apologize along the lines of: “sorry I’m late, I’m usually never late”. The urge to say that comes from a sense of identity built over time by being consistently on time. You may feel bad in that moment, but you don’t let it bother you forever because you know you’ll be on time next time. The same can happen with exercise, diet, sleep, meditation, and any other habit. 

Example: if you decide that running 3x/week is your new habit, ask yourself what would a runner do? Would a runner run on a rainy day? What podcast would a runner listen to? The more you take on the identity of what you want to be doing, the less emphasis you’ll put on missing an occasion, and the more joy you’ll find when performing that habit.

  1. Remember why you are doing it: ask yourself what are the reasons behind your habit choices. Why do you want to be stronger? Why do you want to reduce your A1C? Why is it important to you to reduce your blood pressure? For many of these questions, the answers tend to be outside of ourselves, for our children, for our significant others, to take care of our parents. I found that sometimes thinking of others gives you extrinsic motivation to overcome the lack of intrinsic motivation.

Example: If you decide to strength train, maybe it’s to keep up with your kids or even grandchildren. Think of how much joy those moments bring you when you’re on your way to the gym, thinking you don’t want to lift and were maybe just going to use the sauna.

How does any of this relate to EMS fitness? 

As the title suggests, when it comes to New Year’s Resolutions, EMS fitness provides a lot of solutions relating to working out.

  • EMS workouts are 20 minutes long, with five minutes before and after to suit up and down which means it will be easier to schedule in your week than aiming for an hour workout. 
  • EMS is very effective at getting people stronger. Because electrical muscle stimulation targets both slow and fast-twitch muscle fibers from day one, you will start getting stronger after a couple of weeks, rather than over a few months as with traditional weight lifting.  
  • The EMS SuperSuit applies electrodes directly on the muscles, so any injuries, or limitations around mobility will be circumvented through safe movements at your comfort level.
  • EMS fitness can only be done with the supervision of a certified personal trainer specialized in EMS training, therefore you’ll get the accountability and extrinsic motivation you need to stay consistent.
  • Our EMS equipment is FDA-cleared, portable, wireless, and safe. This means we provide at-home or at-office services, saving you even more time and headache.

If you are interested in learning if EMS fitness would be a good option for you, book a free consultation with me here: https://calendly.com/conradfitness/30min


Director of Education and Technology



Bodybuzz combines Certified Personal Training with Electrical Muscle Stimulation, giving your body a deeper, safer, and more effective workout. 20 minutes twice a week is all it takes!

Our personal trainers will guide you through a custom EMS workout designed specifically for you. Whether you’re looking to build strength, lose weight, get toned, or recover from an injury or illness, we offer a safe, low-impact solution to help get you there.

EMS has now been FDA-cleared for use in the US and we are proud to be one of the first companies to introduce this technology. It is a full-body workout that uses a special muscle stimulating suit that sends low-level impulses to your major muscle groups to trigger muscle contractions. It’s a unique sensation that is painless and invigorating. EMS workouts are designed to achieve optimal conditioning, burn fat, develop strength, build muscle, tighten skin, combat cellulite, jump-start your metabolism and restore your body’s natural balance.