Intervention Journal Project: Behavioral Changes - Paper Example

5 pages
1233 words
Sewanee University of the South
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The behavior that I would like to improve/change is exercising daily. For much of my life, my activity level has ebbed and flowed based on what was going on in my life. However, I believe that it is important to put the most important things first in my life and "everything else" will fall into place. When I think back to times in my life where I felt at my best, which included my energy level, improved mood, and overall good health, was when I made daily exercising a priority. My plan for this Intervention Project is to increase my exercise routine from my current two to three times per week to exercise six days a week for at least 30 minutes per day. I plan to track this behavior by establishing my exercise time Monday through Saturday at 6:30 A.M.; however, I don't want to overdo it the first week or two by attempting to exercise 30 minutes every day. Therefore, I plan to increase my time gradually. My goal is that on the fourth week I will be able to exercise Monday through Saturday for at least 30 minutes starting at 6:30 A.M. In addition to tracking how many days and for how long I exercise, I also plan to track my emotions three times per day, Monday through Saturday. I plan to measure my mood level using the Subjective Units of Distress Scale (SUDS), where 0 represent "No Energy" and 100 represents "The Most Energy I Have Ever Felt." The times I plan to track my mood are 6:15-30, 12:00 P.M., and 10:00 P.M. In addition to tracking my data, I will also journal my thoughts, behaviors, and emotions, and evaluate situations that impact them in my daily accounts. I'm excited to focus on this behavior in my life, as I'm confident it will not only improve my overall physical and mental health but also increase my ability to approach my day. The following represents my intervention journal for the six days.

Day #1: Today I woke up with mixed feeling. I was somewhat excited, to begin my intervention. However, my kids and wife were distracting me with their needs. At that point, my excitement quickly turned to frustration and then escalated to irritability. Some thoughts that came up for me were along the lines of I knew this would happen, life is getting in the way. I have a feeling this is not going to work out. The combination of these thoughts and emotions led me to yell at my family, saying cant you all give me a half hour for myself. I then went and exercised, feeling guilty with how I responded to my family. After all, I realized, I didnt even include them in my plan. This is a lesson I learned to counter the guilt. Nelson and Folta (2009) argue that walking has many benefits and reduces the instance of injury. Walking does not require a particular environment, and it can take place in different settings. I chose to walk in the park where it was quiet and less traffic.

6:15-30 A.M 12:00 P.M 10:00 P.M MEAN(AVERAGE RATING)

45 50 47 47

Day #2: I was feeling tired because of the previous walk from the other day, and my legs, especially the ankles, under the abdomen section were burning so hot I had to wrap myself with an ice cream bag to cool my body. The hurt was almost getting me distracted to the point of wanting to postpone the exercise for the following day. However, despite the hurting, I felt the need to stand up and walk again. I also realized the difficulty of having to oversee oneself in executing something rather than to have someone monitor you. Today, I had the opportunity to walk the track since my son will be at his football practice. The feeling of becoming proactive in my new intervention plan was transforming real and practical. Furthermore, I decided to job with instructions to my wife to bring me the car in the evening after I explained my plans to her.

6:15-30 A.M 12:00 P.M 10:00 P.M MEAN(AVERAGE RATING)

48 42 45 45

Day #3: Today, I felt ecstatic and energetic regarding anything positive. I quickly prepared breakfast for my son and tuned in to some cool music. My son noticed the good mood and complimented that the exercise is working on me. I, however, got distracted because my son was getting late for school and had to drive him to school. Realizing my plan which was to walk for at least 20 minutes, I took him to school and walked to work leaving the vehicle with my wife. Researchers such as Opezzo and Schwartz (2014) have demonstrated that aerobic activity such as walking boosts ideational fluency of an individual.

6:15-30 A.M 12:00 P.M 10:00 P.M MEAN(AVERAGE RATING)

40 42 44 42

Day #4: Walking 20 minutes a day had now become a routine that I adhered to comfortably. The use of telephone prompts as reminders to undertake the physical exercise assisted me in sticking to my schedule without procrastination. Staff members in my job got mesmerized by my change of emotions. Williams, Matthews, Rutt, Napolitano, and Marcus (2008) found that the use of telephone prompts is important for helping individuals to stick to their training routine.

6:15-30 A.M 12:00 P.M 10:00 P.M MEAN(AVERAGE RATING)

38 42 43 41

Day #5: My son was going for his second football practice of the week, so I accompanied him so that I can take the track while he engages in his activity. I realized I was no longer doing the exercise as a routine but I internalized the art while having fun out of it. The walking was fun and the increased heartbeat and panting that I felt during the first few days had decreased significantly. The positive changes in my body were clear indicators of the good results culminating from my exercise. However, I lacked confidence to walk past people who initially used to see me driving. For a moment I felt that they might think that I am broke and this was an economic strategy since I could not afford gas.

6:15-30 A.M 12:00 P.M 10:00 P.M MEAN(AVERAGE RATING)

32 32 26 30

Day #6: I had higher motivation to quit my behavior and maintain the progress I made yesterday. I liked the feeling of making progress. Colleagues in my workplace motivated me, and some of them joined me in my exercises making a team that will propel me in sticking to my new behavior. I made new friends who improved my emotions, mood, and confidence in public. My son also motivated me to continue with the intervention and explore more intervention plans to increase my chances of a healthy life. The dissatisfaction with the body and pressure to lose weight from internal and external sources also plays a huge role in affecting ones moods and desires in life.

6:15-30 A.M 12:00 P.M 10:00 P.M MEAN(AVERAGE RATING)

22 24 18 21

Graph: S.U.D score displaying the progress for walking for 20 minutes a day.



Nelson, M. E., & Folta, S.E. (2009). Further evidence for the benefits of walking. American Society for Nutrition, 89, 15.

Opezzo, M., & Schwartz, D.L. (2014). Give your ideas some legs: The positive effect of walking on creative thinking. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 40(4), 11421152.

Williams, D, M., Matthews, C., Rutt, C., Napolitano, M, A., & Marcus, B.H. (2008). Interventions to increase walking behavior. Medicine and science in sports and exercise, 40(7), 567-573.

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