A number of weeks back, I mentioned that I had a desire to qualify for Boston Marathon which means running a marathon in 3 hrs and 25 mins or less. My details are simple:
1. I like to run and enjoy running,
2. I am 47 years old,
3. I weigh over 18 stone,
4. I have a few lifestyle habits that I am trying to kick.
My reason for putting this objective in front of me is to trigger a change in some lifestyle habits and in turn bring the weight down to a level that is acceptable and healthy. The other side of my life, I am part of the Turlon & Associates (www.turlon.com) team and this can mean a varied work routine mixed with travel and long hours.
Do I want to achieve Boston Marathon qualification? With all honesty, I really don’t mind but I would like to see a concrete shift to a healthier lifestyle through this process. In reaching where I want to go, I have found one word that I need to take very seriously and that word is CONSISTENCY. There is one ingredient that keeps people from reaching their health goals and that ingredient is consistency (in approach). I have seen it in the past, people tend to be impatient when it comes to exercise. Too many times we do not give our plans enough time to reap the benefits for what we are looking for.
No matter what we do in life we will not achieve the success we want unless we work at it day in and day out for months and months. The same goes for my health plan and my lifestyle changes. I can have the best trainer in the world, and the best diet to follow, but if you I do not stick with the consistency of it, I will wind up spinning my wheels. The price to pay is that my goals will go flying be and I will be back with Plan B in a couple of months.
The good news is that the ‘art of consistency’ is my all of our own hands to manage. This is not a skill, talent or ability that we have direct control over. Here are my four main points in order to maintain a consistent approach to achieve what and where I want to go:
1. Workout on the Same Day and at the same Time:- I have found that scheduling workouts on the same day every week will help with consistency. Creating a repeating schedule that you know works minimises the chances to missing a workout.
2. Have an Objective for each Workout:- Each and every workout should have a purpose. I am focusing on the key workouts and will be focusing on the quality and not quantity.
3. Follow the Plan as Best I can:- For most of us, we balance competing demands of life and the reality is that we may not be able get in 100 percent of our workouts each week. A good target is to complete 75 to 85 percent of your planned workouts in a given week. This allows me to achieve what I want without stressing about completeness.
4. If Short on Time, Do a Shorter Workout:- This may seem obvious, but I can skip long workouts altogether rather than doing a quick (and beneficial) 30 minute workout. Rather than feeling down about not getting the full workout in, be positive about having done some workout rather than nothing.
While these are fairly simple steps to follow, they are also very important. For me to succeed, I need to be consistent in my approach rather than feel as if the plan owns me. So for now the word of the day is consistency and the more of it the better.