No missed days: 3 steps to building consistency
So, we’re a few months into 2022. How are those New Year’s resolutions come along?
Keeping up with those habits or achieving those goals you set in January throughout the year is often difficult. It’s probably why we make resolutions in the first place, right?
What I’ve found is while setting goals is an important first step, putting the right plan in place to achieve those goals is vital to your success.
Whether you’re trying to break a personal record at your next OCR race, build better mobility or strength in a certain muscle group, or just lose 10 pounds, research, clinical studies, and our own clinical experience tell us that the single most important factor to success is…consistency.
Let’s say you have a sprained or stiff ankle. You can make all the goals in the world to build mobility back in that ankle, but if you’re only working on your ankle two days a week, you’re not going to make any productive changes.
And when it comes to diet, we all know the feeling of being disciplined throughout the week and then completely throwing that progress away when the weekend comes around.
With all this in mind, here are a few rules I live by to ensure consistency:
1. No missed days
No matter how small or how big your goal is, you need to implement steps that you can perform day-in and day-out. The key here is we’re not missing any days throughout the week.
Let’s say you’ve set a goal of working out for 45 minutes everyday. But one day life happens and you’re not able to fit that full 45 in. I’d much rather you get 15, 10, even 5 minutes of that workout in, instead of skipping it altogether. Again, no missed days.
From there, you can build off that consistency, however small it is, to improve your performance and work towards your ultimate goals.
2. Make it a priority
Do whatever it takes to ensure that your fitness and well-being are prioritized each day.
One easy way to do this: add your workout or daily goal as a task or meeting on your
calendar. You wouldn’t dare miss a work meeting that’s on your calendar. So, why
should you miss a scheduled workout?
If you make health a time-sensitive priority, you’re going to do it. I guarantee you.
3. Use the snowball effect to your advantage
When it comes to fitness, we often think of snowballing as a negative thing.
“My ankle is stiff. Now it hurts. Now I can’t walk or workout on it.”
“I missed one day of a workout. Now I’m cheating on my diet. I might as well forget the whole thing.”
But snowballing can also work in the positive direction. If you start with 5 or 10 minute daily workouts, you’ll find that you’ll soon move to longer workouts. To keep up with your fitness, you’ll start eating better and being conscious of what you’re putting in your body. And, before you know it you’ll be blowing your fitness goals out of the water.
Success builds on itself. I’ve seen it all the time in the gym and at the clinic.
Bottom line: No matter what your goal is, stay consistent and don’t sell yourself short. You owe it to yourself to put you in the best position to succeed. That starts with consistency.