Some good progress from a number of clients this week, and here is where consistency is critical!

I’ve realised through my work and personally, that to achieve, long term, whatever your goal, you need to make it a habit and something you can stick too.

I’ll be honest here. I’ve done a number of 3 month body change challenges (in fact I even won one), but actually the biggest challenge is not during it, but after!

How sustainable is what you are doing on your challenge/short term goal compared to everyday living?

Whatever you have done to achieve your goal has to be followed on to a greater or lesser degree. Can you continue with that same intensity or focus?

It’s easy to be super strict during a short term challenge, but what happens afterwards?

There needs a middle ground, or at least a contingency plan for after.

I would heartily encourage you to build in some flexibility both with eating and exercising.

Too strict (unless you have a willpower of a saint) and it’s easy to go ‘off track’, too lax makes it almost impossible to get to your chosen goal.

Here are some tips I use with my clients;

* Use buffer foods to minimize trigger foods – a buffer food is a less impactive food that still satisfies but doesn’t send you of the rails. So for instance a baked crisp as opposed to fried. Or berries rather than chocolate for something sweet.
* Find exercise/movement that you enjoy – you are making a lifetime commitment. It doesn’t have to be inside or in a gym – try roller skating (!) or hill walking or mountain biking for example.
* If it is hard to stick to long training session, do short intense ones instead – 20 minutes, boom, done.
* Buddy up with someone for additional support. Do it with a friend physically or link up for online support.
* Write out what you have accomplished. I do a 100 day log where clients write out something each day that they’ve achieved towards their goal. After 100 days you have 100 reasons why you should stick with it.
* Book ahead for classes, sessions, etc I get my clients to bring in their diary and book it in a week ahead. It makes a difference to adherence when you’ve booked a specific slot as opposed to just saying I’ll fit it in.
* Vary your training so it doesn’t get boring. eg. with weights try different systems or methods, go outside if you are inside, try different classes
* Book ahead for an event- 3 peaks, 5k run, a bike sportive. I’ve noticed this really gets better results from clients because they have another focus.
* When I haven’t felt like training I just say oh well I’ll do a little something and invariably I do more than I thought!

Anyway, that’s just a few ideas but please feel free to share yours!

Until next week,

Best wishes