Consistency is king. If you’re following sound nutrition, training and lifestyle guidance with consistency you’re extremely likely to be a very happy and healthy individual. Sounds simple, right? That’s because it is. Having the self-discipline to do what you know you should be? That’s another matter entirely. Simple ≠ Easy.
Adherence Is Key…
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle
This is probably what you think of when we mention consistency in regards to training, the regular repetition of certain behaviours. In order to achieve your health and performance goals in the most effective and efficient manner, then there are three key areas with a demand for consistent adherence.
Training: One swallow doesn’t make a summer. One session doesn’t make a training programme. Gains in performance are achieved gradually as a consequence of multiple training sessions, not one or two.
Nutrition: Perhaps the hardest area to achieve consistency, no doubt down to the frequency of meals in relation to training sessions. It’s not about getting too anal with your diet, it’s about getting methodical. Schedule cheat meals if you know that you’ll need them. Focus on putting enough of the good things into your body on a regular basis.
Sleep: The pillar of recovery. Without consistent, quality sleep you’ll be well and truly stifling your potential gains. Get into a good sleep routine and prepare to reap the benefits.
…But There Is More To It
Consistency should mean more than mere adherence when it comes to health and fitness goals. To get the best results it’s about regularly doing the right things in the right way. It can be soul-destroying for you to put in the hard yards only to discover you’ve been going about things in the wrong way.
These are some of the other key factors that warrant consideration:
Effort: More apparent with training than with nutrition. Effort can deliver fantastic results from a shocking programme and, of course, vice versa. It’s not about giving blood, sweat and tears in every session, but you do need to be pushing yourself on regular basis.
Goal Selection: Some goals are mutually exclusive. Training to run a marathon and put on lean muscle mass at the same time isn’t going to do anything worthwhile for either. Don’t be a spoilt child, pick one key goal per training cycle and then stick to it. If you insist on a having secondary goals, keep them few and make sure they’re consistent with your key one.
Programme/Exercise/Diet Selection: Sooo many people fall down here. The best programme is always the one you’re not on, right? If you’re planning to do a Sheiko programme or start living Paleo, acknowledge that results are not instantaneous. You need to stick with something to find out if it works for you.
How Can I Improve Consistency?
The best way to improve consistency is to increase your accountability and I couldn’t possibly think of a better way of doing that than by reading this truly brilliant article! If I had to sum it up in sentence – set some SMART goals, set a routine, get others involved.
Consistency is the key to achieving all goals. It’s simple, but rarely as easy as it sounds. The bottom line, if you want something enough then you’ll find a way to make it happen.