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Four Secrets To Achieve Consistency​

Staying Consistent

Four Secrets To Achieve Consistency

Systems – Substitutions – Support – Simplification

I believe the single most important factor that will determine your success, especially when it comes to fitness, is being consistent. But that is easier said than done.

It’s not impossible to be consistent without ever knowing about or leveraging these secrets. But I hope you begin to see how they can have a huge impact on your ability to stick with a plan. I’ll describe the four secrets and provide some concrete examples that I personally use for each of them.

Systems


Systems are processes or tools that can help organize and streamline your efforts. They provide a structure you can work within that becomes a foundation for your movements, timing, tracking, and actions in a way that encourages repetition.

I pre-order and pre-pay for a week’s worth of pre-cooked, pre-packaged food every week. This completely eliminates excuses for me not having food ready or not having time to prep it or spending money on food that isn’t good for me or not in my budget. I’m not going to let a pre-paid meal go to waste.

Have you ever seen those people in the gym carrying around a gigantic jug of water? Isn’t that kind of annoying? Why can’t they just drink from the fountain when they are thirsty like everyone else? Well, the answer is, that jug of water is a system. It’s an “in your face” accountability tool that shows them real-time how they are doing towards their daily goal. Most of us don’t drink enough water each day and without a way to measure it, most of us won’t realize how little water we actually drink. You should probably be drinking at least a gallon of water each day. Carrying around a gallon jug (your water measuring and accountability system) will help you be consistent with drinking enough water.

Substitutions


Substitutions are mini-cheats that can allow you to be 95% aligned with your fitness goals without having to give up 100% of what you love or without forcing you to endure 100% of what you can’t tolerate.

I have to admit, I have a sweet tooth. I love sweets. But if you really want to lose fat and keep it off, you need to limit simple sugars. There’s no way around it. Something else I need to admit is that I really don’t like the taste of plain oatmeal. Normally I would put a bit of brown sugar on my oatmeal and then all of a sudden, oatmeal is a treat for me. So what I substitute for brown sugar is a little bit of Stevia plus some cinnamon. Now I have to resist eating more oatmeal because it’s become such a treat for me. This substitution helps me get all the goodness that comes from consistently getting my oatmeal.

Another thing most of us need to avoid is excess salt. But just like sugar, it’s in almost everything. And have you ever tried to eat some unseasoned chicken breast? It’s almost impossible to get your mouth to water to swallow it. This is going to sound strange but I have discovered that if I sprinkle on a little bit of Stevia, it doesn’t “replace” what I get from salt, but it does make my mouth water (since I like sweet things) and I enjoy it with my chicken. Sounds crazy and it’s not for everyone, but there are bound to be some creative substitutions out there for you. But be smart, don’t choose a substitute that is worse for you, and choose something you can have in moderation.

Support


What I mean by support is support from your social circle and your environment. We’ve all been in toxic, negative situations in the past. And hopefully, most of us have at least had the pleasure of being around others who were pulling for us, or even better, pushing us, pulling us, showing us, or leading us to success. Think about your social circle. Think about your environment. Think about what you are exposed to through work, friends, social media, and family. Which of those are really supportive? Which couldn’t care less about your goals? And which of those seem to actively campaign against your goals and the steps you’ll have to take to get there?

Another admission here. If you are a negative person, we probably won’t spend much time around each other. I’ve even had some relatives whom I had to cut ties with. Family or not, I just can’t have that constant negative energy pulling me down. You will absolutely be an average of the 5 or so people closest to you. Find others who want to see you do amazing things.

Simplification


Simple and consistent beats complicated and inconsistent every day. People overcomplicate things, making them harder to do, harder to remember, and more time-consuming. The single biggest complaint I hear is that people just don’t have time to fit fitness into their already busy lives. One answer (along with the other 3 mentioned above) is to simplify things.

You will learn that getting to where you want to be physically is 80% diet and 20% exercise. If you can’t improve when you are eating, how much you are eating, and what you are eating; you will never be able to achieve or maintain a high level of fitness. So that 80% means it’s 80% of the battle, 80% of the discipline, and 80% of the time. That’s right, 80% of the time, if not more. But it doesn’t have to be that way. If I had to personally cook all my own meals and vary the source of protein, carbs, and veggies for each meal on each day I would basically have to live in the grocery store and my kitchen with no time for life, let alone exercise. I find something I like, that is still good for me, and it will be almost the only thing I consume for a week. I love the combination of tilapia, jasmine rice, and carrots. Those can be made in bulk, easily made into meals and that is what I eat for a week. Then I change it out to another simple meal that I repeat for the next week. And if I get hungry, I have simple, easy snacks like a few almonds or a protein shake. It’s easy. It’s simple

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