Of all the areas you can focus on in your training, the single one that yields the biggest results is consistency. Whatever your training goals, consistency is important across the board in achieving them. This article focuses specifically on the most common goals of building muscle and burning fat, but the principle applies to all aspects of training.
So much of the advice we get is extreme and only sustainable in the short term, but true gains in fitness take time and consistency. Whether it’s muscle gain, fat loss, or learning a new skill, be prepared to put the work. It will be rewarding, and if you can learn to enjoy the process, there is a much better chance of achieving your goals and maintaining at that level for longer.
When you train consistently, you give your body a more gradual curve to adapt to the stress of training, easing its way to higher levels of fitness. The longer period of time you develop a base of fitness, the less effect an interruption of training has. There is a common trend of doing something different all the time, going for the latest training method or exercise. But this hinders building the vital consistent base. Too much variety and variability can result in a reverse of adaptations, rather than greater gains.
Consistency occurs in the small areas. Focus on the day by day, session by session, and meal by meal. It’s a skill that needs to be worked on and applied daily. Working on it on a daily basis also makes it easier to manage when you mess up. Make a bad food choice? Make a good one the next meal, and you’re back on track. Bad training session? No problem, you have another session tomorrow to do better.
The more infrequently you train, the greater the importance is placed on each session. Your inconsistency leads to too much stress, as you try to make up for the missed sessions by doing extra hard training. These hard sessions will not make up for the missed training, and could potentially lead to overstressing the body, resulting in a decrease in performance, injury, illness, and further missed sessions.
By contrast, when you train consistently, you don’t need to go all out each session. There is more room and flexibility for variation in intensity. There is even room for outright bad sessions. You have more opportunity to try different set and rep schemes, and different exercises. Your sessions can be shorter, which is less stressful and gives you more time outside the gym to live life. Consistency enables increases in skill and technical proficiency, as you spend more time working on these areas.
Add new movements and challenges to keep things fun. Variety also prevents injury from over-trained muscles. You still need to build that solid base, but once that is in place you can add in some variety. For example, choose handstand push ups instead of military presses. Both are vertical pressing exercises, but handstand push ups are way more fun!
Consistency creates momentum, and vice versa. Pick a number of training sessions per training block to help build momentum. It’s much easier to build on 10 sessions than 2 sessions. By just adding one more you’ve hit 11 sessions. Keep building!
Edisons Smart Fitness
Gym, Health Club, Fitness Center
North Myrtle Beach, Myrtle Beach, Little River