How to be consistent and how to stay consistent? Do you find it hard? Because I do.
There is one very specific thing that you need to dial down and focus on to get results. This one thing is far more important than any other factor.
You’re not gonna like it, but the best part is that it gets much easier over time. This one thing will help you create long-lasting healthy habits, that will help you Be The Change.
“Okay Marcus, enough of this mystery, tell me how to be consistent and how to stay consistent already…”
Fine! But as I said, you won’t like it, but you need to hear it.
The thing that you need to focus on is Consistency. Yeah that’s right, if it’s not clear to you why this is the one thing you need to focus on, that’s great. Because you’re in the right place to learn why. In this post, I’ll explain why consistency is the one thing. Provide you with strategies and tactics to stay consistent.
What is consistency?
I want to make sure we’re on the same level and have a mutual understanding of consistency before we dive deeper.
Your level of consistency refers to how good you are at doing what you set out to do, according to your plan. If you aim to go to the gym four times per week and only go two, then your consistency isn’t very good for that one week. But if you complete four workouts nine out of ten weeks, then you consistency is pretty damn great.
Being consistent means that you adopt good habits, that you stick to the majority of the time. Adopting good habits will make you consistent. These habits are also thus very important in how to get results.
Being consistent means, picking good habits. Such as deciding your training program and eating habits, and sticking to them. The most important part is not your specific training program or eating habits, but to pick one, and stick to it. Also, know as being consistent…
Why is consistency so important?
As a personal trainer, I’ve seen and heard all the excuses. But at the very core of these excuses lies the lack of consistency. Your results are not poor because the training program isn’t the best. Nor because your eating habits are not ‘the right for you’.
Your results are poor because you are not able to stay consistent for more than three days. You can have incredible success with yoga, weight training, body weight workouts. You can have incredible success with eating paleo, keto, high carb, high protein, no sugar.
But guess what it all comes down to? Not the specific training program. Not the specific eating habits.
Stop jumping from program to program, eating habits to eating habits, pick one and stick to it.
Anything (almost) will work if you give it time and effort in the form of consistency.
I’ve changed my training programs and eating habits around countless of times. They’ve all worked great because I stayed consistent.
Do you want to know my absolute favorite thing about consistency? It get’s easier over time if you adopt good habits.
If you can Be The Change that you want to see, and get past those first few weeks it get’s so much easier.
Doing your workouts as per your training program weekly. Stick to your good eating habits daily, and you become a consistency machine.
Guess what follows consistency? Results.
Guess what follows results? Pride. Happiness. Hunger for more which makes it easier to keep going. The list goes on…
How to be consistent and how to stay consistent?
I understand that being consistent and changing habits is f*cking hard. How to be consistent can be tricky for anyone.
But the best thing is that if you can become consistent, how to stay consistent is keep doing what you do.
It’s not your fault, we’re bombarded with advertisements. Adverts for unhealthy snacks, foods and netflix-esque habits all day. Social environments can be a nightmare. They are hard to navigate without the right approach.
While you can’t control all things around you that will try to side-track you from your plan. You can control your actions, habits, and thus your consistency.
It does get a lot easier to stick to your plan and habits over time. So what can you do to become more consistent?
I’ll share with you my favorite consistency hacks that I use myself and for my clients. If you can adopt even one of these, you are on the right path, adopt all three and you’ve struck gold.
Pick and stick
Pick a training program, whatever the program, yoga classes, running etc. and stick with it. Decide your frequency (how many times per week to workout) and just do it.
Pick and adopt a way of eating that you think will be a good match and then stick to that approach. This is a key tactic on how to be consistent.
Tracking prevents slacking
This can be a bit strange and feel time-consuming in the beginning, but it will become an easy part of your days. Keeping track of what you eat and the exercise that you perform is a great way to stay consistent. But it also helps give you a much better idea of different foods calories and nutritional values.
Even if you only track for a few weeks, it will open up your eyes. You will understand how you should be eating. It will make it easier in the future to keep your eating habits good. I use and recommend Cronometer for tracking food, exercise, and biometrics.
Tracking is my personal best tool for how to stay consistent.
Plan, and prepare, it’s worth I swear
If you arrive at work, where you’ll spend the next eight to ten hours. You arrive without a plan or any preparation, what do you think will happen? Do you think you’ve set yourself up to stay consistent to your new eating habits? Or will you default to fast food, a sandwich in the cafeteria, or a 600 calorie chocolate snack in the afternoon?
But, if you plan your days either the day before or in the morning of, you’re much more likely to do as you should. Pack yourself a lunch box according to your eating habit. Include some appropriate snacks for when or if needed.
You know that once you get to that hangry stage, it’s very easy to go for the quickest and easiest fix. Plan and prepare, and you’ll have countermeasures and preventions in place.
Starting to get a little pre-lunch hangriness coming in, and lunch is still two hours away? Grab that apple instead of a double chocolate chip muffin.
I recommend doing meal-prep for your week ahead on Sundays. By cooking in batches you save lots of time and money. That reduces your daily effort to stay consistent, which is key to be able to.
Combine your meal prep with planning the day before, at least thinking about the day ahead. It will give you a better sense of being in control the following day.
If you use Cronometer or anything similar, you can even create your own recipes. You can also add anything that you plan to eat into the app the day before. Then stick to what you’ve entered into the app when the next day comes.
Action item: Plan what you’ll eat tomorrow and plan your workout. Then execute that plan tomorrow.
Cross of consistent days will guide you through the maze
Having a calendar or monthly printout to check off each consistent day as you go is satisfying. It’s cool but and very effective to build a long link of consistent days. A method used by Jerry Seinfeld and other high performing people.
So when you feel like going off-path. Think about your long link of consistent days might keep you consistent.
Action item: Get a calendar or print out one online and start crossing off your consistent days.
Goal setting, result getting
Setting up short, medium, and long-term goals are well researched and proven. A perfect result getting method. Set up achievable short-term goals that you can check of once achieved. The likelihood of you staying consistent is much higher if you do.
Like checking of successful days of consistency. It’s very satisfying to check off goals that you reach. This is how you can apply goal setting in your quest on how to be consistent.
Use the S.M.A.R.T. approach, and look over your goals on a daily basis to maximize their impact on how to be consistent.
S – Specific, specify what, why, how, when, conditions, limitations etc.
M – Measurable, needs to be something that you can measure, X days of consistency, X lbs lost etc.
A – Achievable, pick something that you can achieve, both for time and effort you can put in. But also related to your current ability/state.
R – Relevant, is this the right goal for you? Is this goal a good idea now?
T – Time, time-frames are important, deadlines are great to put some pressure on yourself. What can you do today? What can you do in 6 months from now?
Action: Set up 6 goals, 2 short-term(1-3 weeks), 2 medium-term (4-8 weeks), and 2 long-term (10-16 weeks) using the S.M.A.R.T. approach.
Tell your peers, it will put those habits into gears
This can be a hard step, the hardest of them all. Once you make it public, in social media or by telling your peers in person, they expect you do stick to it. If you don’t, what will they assume of your commitment ability to what you claim?
It’s rarely as harsh as you think, we live in a world that is full of empty claims and ‘action-faking’. But we still think that others will judge us and think less of us if we say one thing and don’t stick to it. Let’s use that to our advantage.
Tell your friends, family and social-media followers what you’ve set out to do. If you’re going to stop eating processed foods and go to boxing classes four times per week let them know. Want to lose 20lbs and then maintain your new habits to live a long and healthy life? Tell them!
If anything else didn’t kick you into gears on how to be consistent, this will.
Ask if anyone wants to join you on the journey. Post updates as you go, show the results.
Because once you’ve made that statement, it’s in the human nature to want to stay consistent. Use that part of the human nature to your advantage, tell everyone!
Action item: Make a post on social media, and or tell your close friends and family what you’ve set out to do. Ask them to check in on you later on.
Last but not least…
Just do it. That’s all that’s left. These are my favorite tips on how to be consistent.
You can either move on, keep scrolling your social media, browser YouTube like many others. Or take action and get starting with better habits.
The main difference between you and that Instagram model that you follow and envy?
She took action and stayed consistent.
Thank you so much for reading, please share the post if you enjoyed it and leave a comment if you have anything to say.
Remember guys, Be The Change.
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