There are many important things in life that aren’t achievable the first time you try. For example,
driving a car, speaking a new language or learning to play a new sport. Improving and striving for the
body you desire is no different.
The one common ingredient they all require in order to achieve them is consistent repetition.
Despite what you may read, the perfect body is not likely to be achievable due to a “6 week diet”
or an “8 week fat blasting program”. Sure, these can help (mainly because they offer you a rigid
structure that you lacked before), but the key is long term consistency.
Get these three areas (below) right, and get them right consistently and you won’t need to be diving
into your local newsagents 6 weeks ahead of your next holiday panicking about the forthcoming trip
to the beach.
This is probably THE most important aspect that requires monitoring and consistency if you’re
looking to get significant results. Crash dieting is not the solution, but consistent “clean” eating is.
This doesn’t mean that you survive on a diet of cabbage soup, never to eat a piece of chocolate
again; instead that you regulate your food, aiming to eat food without preservatives, additives, or
extra fats, sauces and sugars. Many in the know try to live by the rule “If it hasn’t grown from the
earth, walked or swam then don’t eat it.”
Of course, you need a balance. Initially, try to aim for Monday-Friday without treats, alcohol and
sugary snacks and allow yourself a little more leeway at the weekend (not ALL weekend!). Then as
this becomes more manageable, remove the “treats” bit by bit.
The main area to focus on when aiming for consistency is: Preparation. Don’t leave anything to
chance! Don’t “Pick some lunch up while you’re out” or “Grab something later.” Either prepare your
meals in advance or know exactly when and what you’re going to be eating throughout the next day,
every day. I’m sure many people will claim it’s not possible with their irregular work schedule but,
it really is. For example, just thinking ahead, realising you’re going to be in meetings for 4 hours the
next day means that you can make sure you take on some form of slow releasing nutrients such as a
Casein blend protein shake prior to the meetings. By doing this you’ve avoided reaching for handfuls
of biscuits during the meeting or bouts of starvation and an irregular blood sugar level.
How many times have you heard someone you know say something along the lines of “I was good
last week, I went to the gym 4 times!” But what about the week before that? And the week before
that? We should be pleased when we have managed to string together successive exercise sessions
in one calendar week. However, the real target is again, consistency.
The body will take time to adapt and evolve to new demands that you place on it, therefore in
order to encourage this constant adaptation it’s essential that exercise is consistent and always
challenging in order to benefit in the long term.
If you’re inconsistent with your gym visits and they may range anything from 0-4 visits per week,
build up in manageable stages. Visit the gym twice for 2 weeks, then three times for 2 weeks, then 4
times per week regularly. This is much more likely to lead to a consistent regime rather than aiming
to go every day and being too tired or sore to go after 2-3 weeks.
REST & SLEEP
In theory, it’s the easiest thing to do consistently; but, for one reason or another, many people are
under-rested. Social calendars, working hours, family commitments or engaging in evening sport, it
can be easy to go all year without good quality rest on a regular basis.
Getting the right amount of sleep allows your metabolism to stay regulated as well as improving
food choices during your waking hours. It also helps your body to recover and repair; muscle repair
and growth and your immune system and bodily functions to rest and re-energise, yet so many of us
neglect good quality, consistent sleep.
Simple rules: 1)Aim for a solid, uninterrupted 6-8 hours sleep EVERY night. 2)Create a good sleeping
environment. Use strong, blackout blinds and clean, comfortable, bedding. 3)Switch off. Take
yourself away from all electrical devices (phones, TV’s, computers) at least 30 minutes before bed.
4) Build it into your routine. Start to unwind before you go to bed. Lessen activity of your mind and
body before lying down. Don’t expect to go running, have a shower and a quick phone call then
climb into bed and sleep like a baby.
If you can focus on these three areas, factor them in and monitor them from day-to-day you can be
sure to follow a steady path towards achieving your desired goal and physique. Get them right from
time to time or focus on just two of the three areas and expect irregular or slow progress. Leave
nothing to chance: Prepare for consistency and then be, “Consistently consistent”.
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