If I lost a pound of fat and gained a pound of muscle for every time I heard or read the words, “Consistency is key,” I would be the fittest woman on the planet. Unfortunately, its the last words I want to hear because consistency isn’t easy. I wish there was an easy way out, a magic supplement or a piece of workout equipment that would help me reach my fitness goals quickly and painlessly, but there isn’t any. I’ve struggled with consistency a lot in the past. I understand the frustration of losing the weight only to start gaining again the moment you return to old habits. The path to fitness is laden with pitfalls, but if you learn from my mistakes and start your journey prepared, you can learn to live a life of consistency and achieve your fitness goals.
A consistently healthy diet is the first thing one should strive for to achieve their fitness goals. For me, my body thrives on the ketogenic diet and at least 12:12 intermittent fasting, so each day I keep track of mealtimes and my carb intake. I also keep an eye on my other macronutrients and calorie count to be sure I remain in a calorie deficit. I’ve learned its unrealistic for me to expect that I can stick to a carb-restrictive diet all the time, so I allow myself to eat more carbs on the weekend. Tracking my food on weekdays is crucial for me, as it reminds me to eat healthy portions, but once in a while, I don’t have the time or energy to track all my meals. On these days, I utilize one of my go-to recipes or products that I already know fit into my macros such as protein shakes, protein bars, or frozen low-carb pizza. Keeping my cupboards and refrigerator stocked with healthy meals and snacks helps me stay consistent during the week, even when life gets busy.
I have exercised pretty regularly since starting my fitness journey a couple years ago, but more recently I committed to a free workout program that I found online. This program has a set schedule with built in rest days and instructional YouTube videos. It wasn’t easy, but I was motivated to show up most days because I wanted to stay on schedule as much as possible. When I completed the program, I not only saw real results from my consistent workouts, but I also grew so much more confident in myself and my abilities. Having a set workout schedule has become critical for success in my fitness journey.
I have saved one of my biggest motivators for last because I cannot emphasize it enough. Accountability, or the lack thereof, is a determining factor for me in my pursuit of consistency. Its important to communicate your goals with your friends and family, so they can support you on your journey and so they understand if your eating habits and lifestyle changes. I recently started a free Instagram DM fitness accountability group #20n2k20. It is a supportive online community of women, who may all be on different walks of life, but are all on a health and fitness journey together. At the start of the month, we share our goals and hold each other accountable to keeping them. We post almost daily updates to our Instagram stories to share with the group. Knowing that I am going to be sharing my day with my group really motivates me to make each day a healthy one.
Keeping track of my meals, planning my workouts, and surrounding myself with supportive people is crucial for maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but all this will not sustain me if I do not have a proper motivation. My journey is only as successful as my destination is worthwhile. It is important for me to remember the reason I started and the reason I keep on going. My journey is not a pursuit of aesthetics and beauty. My goal should never be to achieve what society sees as the “ideal” female form or to arrive at any specific weight. I have to remind myself that vain pursuits like these will only discourage and frustrate me. Instead, I remember that my goal is to take care of the body God gave me and become the healthiest version of myself, inside and out. The key to staying motivated to be more consistent with fitness is to consistently check your motivation for fitness.