Consistency is the absolute key to getting long-term exercise results. Those results come from a rock-solid fitness habit foundation.
If you don’t have this in place, your workouts will be about as effective as cold instant decaf. And no ever wins there. We may as well toss crunchy peanut butter under this bus too while we’re at it.
If you want to set yourself up for consistent fitness wins, here are a few ways to do it.
Now, notice I didn’t say “set yourself to absolutely crush your workouts week and week out never missing a day.” Because trying to “crush” each workout is not possible, regardless of how solid your plan is. Mostly because every winning streak comes to an end. Essentially, strike while the proverbial PE iron is hot because rest assured it will cool off. It always has, and always will.
Everyone goes through periods where they feel like they can “take on the Empire by themselves. And we all go through periods where we end up like old Dak and just can’t exercise for whatever reason. This is where consistently moving saves the day.
Keep the habit up, and it’s a lot easier to course correct when things get off track or you just plain old feel terrible and your body needs some rest. You just need more wins than losses to come out ahead with your fitness habit to succeed.
With that being said, here are five effective ways to build your system and keep progressing toward your goals.
Keep a log BOOK (Yep, old school, with paper and pencil)
If you can measure something, you can progress it. If you can progress, you can reach a goal. Seems pretty simple right? You’d be surprised my friends, you’d be surprised. The beautiful thing about keeping a log book is not only can you keep track of the exercises you’re doing including sets/reps/load, you can write down how you feel during your workout as well as how you felt the next day.
This is an incredibly effective way to know if your workout is working. Plus, if you’ve got a few missing days, you know you’ve gotten off track and its time to get back after it. If you use your calendar book long enough, you’ll look forward to seeing where your workouts were, and what you need to do to keep them heading in the right direction.
Keep Your Equipment In The Same Place
If you work out at home, this is critical. It will keep you organized and greatly reduce the amount of energy you need to start a workout. If you split time between home and the gym, keep your bands, weights, suspension straps, etc in the same place. Ideally set up at all times if possible.
For the gym, keep your bag in the same closet. Which means you’ve got to put it back there when you get home. Be consistent and build the habit.
Oh, and make sure your earbuds are always charged too. Music is critical for my workouts, and the one time I heard “battery 5%” I instantly got lactic acid accumulation of my sould and I had a terrible workout.
Exercise In The Same Place On The Same Days/Times
Much like the early bird gets the worm (I’m guessing because its up to early to go get coffee), becoming a creature of habit will make it a lot easier to be successful with your fitness program. If your brain gets used to “I will exercise at this place on this day at this time,” when those days and times come around, your brain will be more geared to getting your workout in.
If you’re all over the place with when you workout, your results (or lack thereof) will reflect that. Pick a schedule, set it in stone and use that as your system to get things done. This why you absolutely need to know your “when” for your workouts. If you know when the best time of the day is for your body to move, you’ll be more apt to replicate your workouts consistently.
Use FEWER Exercises To Get MORE Done
Alright people, here’s the deal. Using the CardiogaPlyolatesKickBox-X approach to your workouts is one of the LEAST EFFECTIVE ways to exercise. Think about it, if you ask your body to do 47 different things each time you workout, it won’t have a clue as to what you want it to get better at.
Especially if you try to do strength and cardio in the same workout. Pick a lane is the takeaway here. If you’re going to go the strength route, pick three (four MAX) exercises and absolutely master them. Then progress them. That is incredibly simple, and more importantly, incredibly effective.
When you go #LEASTMODE in your workouts, you’ll accomplish a lot more in less time.
Get A Partner Or A Coach
When I was racing my mountain bike, I got really fast because I rode with groups on designated times and days. I also had a coach who mapped out how many, how much and how often for me. All I had to do was look in my email to see the workout, let a little piece of my soul die because of how hard it was going to be and head out to ride.
The group kept me accountable because I committed to showing up to ride on certain days and times. Plus, when we were actually able to talk in between intervals, it was a lot of fun to be a part of a community that the same common goal as I did: get faster.
Alright people, I’ve just laid out five incredibly simple ways to make consistently exercising a lot easier. If you just read that sentence, it means you got down this far and that is greatly appreciated.
Until next time, I’m Al Painter and I’m a firm believer that basics work best!
The more simple and repeatable your workout system is, the faster you’ll hit your goal!