In the past few weeks you have been going hard at the gym. You notice in the mirror that your stomach looks smaller and your face looks leaner. Excitement rushes through you.
Finally! Finally, you are seeing some results. All of that hard work is paying off. You decide for the up and coming week you will go even harder than ever. There is no stopping you now.
You are brimming with pure confidence! For the next week you are positive that more weight loss with occur. You are confident that a new toned sexy body will begin to shine through.
You end your power week in victory!
All week you pushed yourself and did not deviate from your 6 day rigorous workout schedule. For the weekend you decide to take one day off and rest. This is well deserved. You know come Monday will be ready to power up and go hard for the next 6 days.
Monday morning slams down on you like a pile of bricks. You have a workout scheduled that morning but soreness seems to be in every muscle. Muscles that you didn’t know existed are sore.
You peek out from under the covers and realize that rain is rushing down your window pane. You listen to the rhythmic drum of the rain and decide to take 30 more minutes.
Everything is so soothing plus you have been going hard for the past few weeks.
You deserve a break.
You deserve some time for your body to rest. Tomorrow is another day. You are sure it will be sunny, warm and motivating. You make the final decision to skip Monday and start fresh on Tuesday.
Rain rushes down your window pane again. Unfortunately, a slow moving storm sits upon your area. The soothing melodic rain lulls you back to sleep. You skip Tuesday as well. After all, you are still sore and have been going super hard.
All of a sudden you realize that it has been a week since you have worked out! Guilt washes over you. You feel like a complete failure and wonder where the time went. You feel a little thicker than last week.
Self loathing starts to creep in. You stumble to the bathroom and start staring in the mirror judging your body. You see a plumper face and stomach.
Why even bother if it only takes a week for results to fade? Why bother pushing yourself that hard for minimum result?
You start to get angry at the whole working thing. It’s becoming super frustrating for you. You decide to have an awesome brunch with some close friends. This makes you feel relaxed and happy.
One month later.
You decided that your self imposed break is over. You resolve to start fresh again on Monday. Monday comes and goes. You can’t seem to get back into it. You decided to try next week. Nothing happens.
Six months later.
You realize it’s been so long since you have attempted to work out. Guilt and frustration washes over you. Why can’t you seem to stay consistent? Are you lazy? Is your genetic code meant for you to be overweight?
You are not alone.
I’m here to tell you none of the negative questions you ask yourself are true. I have been there. I used to try and use sheer willpower to make myself exercise.
I found myself in this cycle of starting to see results. Then I felt too overwhelmed to continue my rigorous schedule.
I also noticed this funny thing. Giving up was even easier when I received compliments on my progress. In my head it solidified that I had met my goal and I deserved rest.
I would give up and repeat the same cycle months later. I lost tons of money on personal trainers and gym memberships. Year after year I started to look worse and worse. I was so frustrated that I could not get it together. I felt and looked terrible.
I am fortunate I hit rock bottom without hospitalization. I felt and looked so bad that I reached out for support.
One visit with a nutritionist changed my life.
I hope severe health symptoms will not be the catalyst for you to institute consistency in your workouts.
Being stuck in a negative pattern means you find comfort in that particular cycle. To break that pattern may cause fear and overwhelm. Plus, you may not even know how or why it started in the first place.
How you can break this cycle for good.
The first step you can take is by observing your behavior for one day.
This may seem weird and hard. It may surprise you what you think you do versus what you actually do. It may be helpful to take some observation notes as well.
Next by observing your behavior, you make a roadmap to the root of the problem.
You can practice by meditating on the cause of inconsistency. You might be acting out of rebellion from a childhood trauma. You may realize you fear success. By being mindful of your actual actions you can start to be kind to yourself.
You then form better habits without much resistance.
Once you discover the root your inconsistency, you can start to solve your at first glance mountainous issue.
Let’s get back to the issue of being inconsistent with physical activity.
Find a form of exercise you actually enjoy.
Do that particular activity twice a week. This can be as simple as doing pushups and squats in the living room. Focus on doing that one activity twice a week for at least two months. If you find yourself doing more go with it.
Set the minimum time you work out to twice a week for two months.
If you go more consider it a bonus. Starting at a bare minimum and working from there will increase your chances for massive success.
You won’t feel sore or overtrained. You won’t feel bored because you like how you workout. Being consistent doesn’t have to be a chore. Bringing in fun and interesting activities in your life is the key.
When you find one or two types of exercise that you love success is easy to attain. You can focus on the enjoyment of the exercise. You are less likely to skip or dread your physical activity.
As you focus on the pleasure exercise brings, doing more of it becomes easy. Being inconsistent is no longer an issue.
About 7 months ago I found that I enjoy spin classes. The racing and high energy appealed to me. I have skipped spin 2 times in the last 7 months. Are there times that I don’t want to go? Yes. But I found something that is fun and challenging. I know that even when I don’t want to go it takes little effort to reframe my mindset. This is all because I actually like spin.
I encourage you to find your fun workout zone.
You will see astonishing results. With consistency, weight loss and a toned body will manifest.
Your challenges will still need attention.
You may find that being more consistent is a little harder than you imagined. One of my favorite writers on habit building James Clear makes this easier. He breaks down the steps for you so you have an actionable plan. You can turn hard into easy.
It may take a little time to implement consistency but the rewards are immense.
With time consistency will become second nature. You won’t even have to put much effort in getting into the correct mindset. Consistency now becomes part of your new life.
When starting to form consistency it’s always a great idea to let a few people you trust know about your intentions.
This way they can hold you accountable and keep you on track. Of course the people you tell will practice good habits themselves. This way you can support each other.
Life becomes easier when you surround yourself with likeminded people.
People who will support you will not react in a negative manner when you make a mistake or “fail”. Failure when building consistency is a great teacher. It lets you know what you need to work on and how you can improve.
I know that you may perceive failure as the enemy but it is a great teacher. Without failure we could not see all the possibilities for improvement. Surround yourself with like minded people. Accept failure as part of the learning process.
Have fun with your consistent workouts!
Back to what I mentioned earlier; start with something realistic like exercising twice a week for two months.
One consistent step in the right direction goes a long way.
Your resistance is now beat in the face!
Take constant action for continued success in your life. Commit to working on consistency. Take the first step and receive my free guide One Healthy Meal a Day . This guide is the perfect compliment to your consistent workout schedule .
Only you can take action to improve your life. Support from others guides you.
One more thing before you go and take that first step…
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Originally published at medium.com