One of the biggest struggles that people face when they set off on a fitness journey is consistency,
I know this because they tell me all the time, and I see other trainers also talk about it all the time on social media.
In this post I would like to offer my perspective on the reasons why it’s so difficult to maintain the initial enthusiasm over the long run.
In my experience, one of the main reasons why it’s difficult for people to stay consistent with their fitness efforts is that their health and fitness are not high enough on their list of priorities. They don’t have any urgency, and it’s not important enough for them to remain interested.
They might say to themselves that they really want to achieve this or that fitness goal, but in reality they are not feeling it and they know very well that it’s not true. In other words, they are full of ? and their actions, or lack thereof, betray how they really feel about their health and fitness.
If this is you, remember that without your health you’ve got nothing.
What can you do to stay consistent?
The best thing to do if you find yourself falling off the wagon more times than you stay on it is to take a good hard look at your fitness journey. Decide what it means to you, remind yourself of why you started in the first place, and honestly admit where it lands in your list of priorities.
If it’s low on that list, it’s OK but own it.
Also take into consideration the fact that when life happens the first thing that goes out the window is self care. And your fitness journey is a big part of it, because it helps you discover all the things that keep you healthy, strong and resilient.
So, maybe it’s time to re-frame your situation, adjust your priorities accordingly and rewrite your plan in a way that will make it easy for you to stick it out until you reach your goals.
Keep doing this exercise until what you say you want to achieve matches they way you feel about it.
It’s often the case that until the pain of staying the same is stronger than the arseache of having to take action, that we start to own our situation and we become icons of consistency in any endeavour.
Another reason that you can’t stay consistent is that you don’t have a proper goal. And by that I mean a goal that has meaning for you. Not just the usual “I’d like to shrink a dress size”… by when? In the next 3 months? In the next 10 years? Before you are 100?
Imagine planning for each one of those scenarios. Which one do you think is going to encourage consistency more?
When you’ve set yourself a goal that truly, deeply, means something important to you every single action you take throughout your day will help you get that little bit closer. You won’t need to think about it, you’ll just do it naturally.
It’s the same when you go on a trip: you need to know your destination in order to get there. Then you can plan the best route based on whether you want to enjoy the ride or just arrive as fast as you can.
The art of keeping it simple to stay consistent
Over the years, I conducted my own “research” into different ways of approaching fatloss and I admit to spending ££££s in DIY programs. I learned something from each one of them, but the biggest lesson has been to keep things as simple as possible to remove barriers to consistency.
Some of the programs available online are extremely complicated to make up for the lack of personal touch and instead of inspiring compliance, they make you want to carve your eyes out with a wooden spoon by the end of day two.
These plans are not sustainable long term as they require you to spend a lot of your day filling in spreadsheets, counting how many almonds you are eating, how many grains of boiled rice and so on. Can you really do that for longer than a few days?
If you can, I applaud you. I failed.
What you really need is the ability to create a plan that suits your lifestyle by adding to it, not taking away precious time from your day. Then you’ll find it super easy to follow it and before you know it you’ve formed new, healthier, habits.
Do you really need accountability to stay consistent with your fitness efforts?
When you fail to get excited about your fitness plan you might fall into the trap of seeking outside help in staying motivated to carry on. In other words: you want someone else, other than you, to keep you accountable for your actions.
The thing is, people like me can offer you guidance, but ultimately the responsibility for your results lays entirely with you. When you say you want someone to hold you accountable you are really saying that you are unable to fully commit to yourself and your journey.
You’ll fail to achieve your goals and then you’ll blame me or the entire fitness industry for your shortcomings. And that’s not fair.
There’s a better way to do this: get guidance.
I would be honoured to do that for you.
But if this is not a good time for you why not start with my “Super Simple Fitness Planner”?
You can either download the digital version straight away or you can order a physical copy (it takes about a week to arrive).
The latter is coil bound so you can easily write in your planner without having to first break the spine.
The design is super bland by… eeerrr… design as a big part of planning and goal setting is about understanding your deepest desires around self image. Drawing, doodling and scribbling will help you bring those thoughts out of your subconscious and then you can work with them.
I reduced the number of parametres to track to the bare minimum to still give you a good sense of whether you are making progress or not. But I also don’t want you to spend hours on this.
As I often say, my Fitness Planner planner is simple, not stooopid.
Check it out and if you have any questions reach out!