Exploring links between self-regulatory efficacy, self-monitoring and physical activity in people with prediabetes


Background: Self-regulatory efficacy (SRE) addresses one's confidence to engage in self-regulatory skills, such as goal-setting and self-monitoring (SM). SRE is often used as a direct predictor of physical activity (PA). Given the tenets of how self-efficacy is bolstered through mastery experiences, it is plausible that practice of self-regulatory skills can influence this relationship. This study aimed to explore relationships between SM, SRE, and PA through the comparison of two models using structural equation modeling (Model 1 = SRE and PA; Model 2 = SRE, SM, and PA). Methods: Participants (N=49) completed a two-week diabetes prevention program focusing on brief-counselling, self-regulatory skills development, and PA. Following the program, participants self-monitored their PA through a mobile app for 12-months. SRE was measured at baseline, 6- and 12-months, and objective PA (via 7d accelerometer) was completed at 12-months. Results/Conclusions: Goodness-of-fit indices for Model 1 resulted in poor model fit (?2(16) = 31.3, p =.01, NFI = .85, CFI =.92, RMSEA = .14) with 37% of variance in objective PA accounted for. Including self-monitoring in the model (Model 2) yielded an improved 'good' fit to the data (?2(11) = 9.12, p =.61, NFI = .97, CFI = 1.00, RMSEA = .00), while increasing the variance accounted for in objective PA by 8%. SRE should more strongly predict the skills needed to self-regulate PA than PA itself. Objective SM through a mobile app enhanced the prediction of PA. Future research should consider including actual SM in PA prediction.