Train regularly.

Why training consistently is a game changer.

May 1, 2018

Why training consistently is a game changer.

May 1, 2018

We are the product of what we repeatedly do. Excellence therefore, is not an act but a habit.


Consistency is arguably the single most important aspect in creating positive change. Training effort and intensity mean nothing without it. Even a poorly designed program performed regularly will have greater forward progress than an effective program practised once a week. Often people cram hours of training into a couple of days and spend the next week or two feeling too sore and too fatigued to get back into training. This all-or-nothing approach requires more effort, while producing less results in comparison to regular training.


It’s true that consistent training isn’t always easy. You will need to train on days when you are tired, busy, travelling, injured and feeling unmotivated. Too frequently, I see people about to give up, because life got in the way of their scheduled training. Things don’t always go to plan, in fact, they often don’t go to plan. Sometimes you miss a session. Some days you don’t eat well. Some sessions you feel weak. It’s all part of life and a part of any normal fitness journey. Being able to let go of perfectionism is crucial to positive progress. Because some days you will also feel strong, motivated and energised.

In a society where we are used to things on demand, it can be hard to grasp the long-term reality of developing true strength and fitness. Consistency needs to be practised on a small scale, in daily actions to produce the long-term result. The quick fixes and fad workouts and schemes often fall flat resulting in burnout and overtraining leaving you weak or injured.

Our muscles require regular stimulus over time to adapt. The human body is geared for survival and therefore doesn’t waste energy on adapting to anything that is fleeting. So while a single workout may not have much of an effect, consistently challenging the body through training will force adaptations to occur within the muscle tissue and cardiovascular system.


So the question remains, how much is enough? Although this is goal-dependent, generally speaking it is 3 sessions per week to improve and 2 sessions per week to maintain. By planning your week in advance to fit in those three sessions as a minimum, you will be setting yourself up for success.


Consistent training has a significant flow-on effect to the rest of your life.
Studies have found exercise to be a keystone habit which can be defined as a habit that leads to the development of multiple good habits. Regular training sets off a chain of positive outcomes making it easier to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Inconsistent training is draining on both your body and your mind. Therefore, make time to understand your barriers to consistent training or what trips up your routine. Understanding the situations that sometimes trip you up will help you plan for a solution.

Check out these common barriers below to get you started:


1. Travel.
Let go of the idea that training can only happen inside a gym. Bodyweight workouts can be adapted to any park or hotel room while you’re on the road. Running, swimming and cycling are all great ways to maintain your fitness while travelling and can add a different element to exploring a new city.


2. Weather.
If you’re not prepared to train in the rain, always have a wet weather option.


3. Poor motivation.
Make sure you understand what is driving you to train. Set meaningful goals and make sure you know your ‘why’. Recruiting workout buddies, joining an active community or hiring a trainer is a great way to stay accountable and keep motivated if you’re falling flat.

4. Busy social life.
Tailor your social life to support and not sabotage your health and fitness goals. If your friends are not on board with your goals, then find a community to make your training social.


5. Demanding work schedule.
Put yourself first. Look past the influx of emails and get away from your desk. As a keystone habit, consistent exercise has been shown to improve productivity, focus, energy and positivity in a work environment.


6. Injury.
Although injuries require rest, sometimes people find an injury puts the brakes on their training completely. Aim to perform the rehabilitation exercises necessary for the injured site while keeping active in any way possible in other areas of your body.


With all this in mind, make time to train regularly, forever. Be prepared to be flexible with where and how you train. Be ready for those days when you are not feeling up to it, armed with the knowledge that your efforts are absolutely paying off in the long-term.

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