I simply say this to myself, Monday through Friday, to remind me that I have to work out today. The three to five tells me that I will get at least three days of lifting weights and hopefully two cardio workouts in every week. My goal for each week is to hit the gym five times a week, in an effort to perform at least thirty minutes of exercise a day every day. A goal of five times a week may seem like a bit much, but the workouts are usually only around forty-five minutes and it’s good for me!!!
Why Not Saturday & Sunday?
On the other hand, you may be asking, “What about Saturday and Sunday? Shouldn’t it be every day of the week.” I agree that seven days a week would be ideal. However, I subscribe to the five days of strong effort towards my goals and then two days of rest and recuperation. Now, the goal is always five times a week, but life happens. Sickness, parties, unexpected things that come up that hit you at the last moment and don’t allow you to get that workout in. If for some reason, I had a tough week and only have two workouts in during the work week, I will schedule time to workout on Saturday to meet my weekly goal.
Take Steps Towards Your Goals
I am a big believer that if you want to have results, you have to take a step towards your goals regularly. A little bit of work each day towards your goal has a huge compound effect over the years. This is where hundreds of thousands of people fail to execute every year. The proverbial “New Years Resolution” to go to the gym every day. It typically lasts for about two to four weeks before the effort is given up. Their intentions are good, and they are hyped up about getting in shape. The hype will keep them going for about a week and a half. Their willpower will keep them going for another week or two. After that, they are checked out and all the excuses in the world come up. The effort is a bust.
Eating The Entire Elephant With One Bite
I believe people try to eat the entire elephant with one bite, rather than a small bite each day. If they would set small goals of thirty minutes in the gym just three times a week, and making that task as easy as possible to complete, they would be successful. I learned within about three months of going out to a gym, that getting up early morning, getting dressed and going out into whatever bad weather there is to drive to the gym just did not work for me. True, every day is not bad weather. But when you are not a morning person, the air is too cold, the temperature is too hot, the rain makes me lazy, and the sun is too much in my face for the early morning. And yes, it was always morning, because I had such a busy day, morning time was the only available time.
I Made It Easier
So, I started buying dumbbells whenever I had the extra money and building my home gym. I bought when I could. Where I lacked the equipment, I performed body weight exercises. You don’t have to have tons of money to have a home gym. You just need a dedicated place and a commitment to do it. Over the years, I have amassed quite a large amount of equipment, promising myself I will buy another nice piece of gym equipment each year. Much like my approach to achieving goals, putting a little effort each day towards working out and investing in my home gym has had a huge effect over the last 17 years. However, if I looked at the end game and decided it would be too much to have my own home gym and I couldn’t afford it, I would probably still be paying for a gym membership, or worse case, not exercising at all.
A Larger System?
My exercise routine is part of a larger system I have created and tweaked to help me reach my fitness goals, experiment with different workout routines, and keep my body strong. There is no end game here…it is just a way of life…how I live. Over the years, I have tweaked the system when I found better ways of doing things, or when I felt I was stagnate in my results.
I have been exercising three to five times a week for over 17 years. No, I did not start out at five times a week. I started with three times. I did not change my diet hard core right away either. I made modifications over the year. The plan was to work out at least three times a week, and then make adjustments as I lived this mantra. Now, I just started using this mantra about a year ago, to be consistent with my daily routine and goals, but it fits perfectly in what I am trying to accomplish.
Even When I Don’t Feel Like It!!!
This mantra helps me to push through and hit the gym, even when I don’t feel like it. I promised myself that I would workout, so I have to. Trust me, it is hard to hit the gym at 6pm on a Friday, after a long week of 5:30am mornings and 11:30pm bed times, including 14 hours of work. But I say to myself, “well, I will go for at least thirty minutes. Something is better than nothing.” This convinces me to at least knock out a small routine. Then, once I am there, 99% of the time, I perform the normal routine and put it behind me. Plus, I believe creation of a new habit does not occur when you feel like doing the activity, but more specifically when you complete the activity when you don’t feel like it. Once the new activity becomes your new norm, it is just something that you do.
You’ll Eat Better Too!!!
Saying this to myself everyday enforces a healthy exercise routine which also encourages me to eat well. The two go hand in hand. Generally, people won’t want to eat unhealthy food on the same day they worked out. We feel like it kinda undoes the health activity we have taken. Thus, daily workouts eventually lead to healthier eating. Then as you start seeing even more positive changes in your health and body, you will tend to tweak your diet to fit in with your goals. Then, before you know it, you are using a fitness system, learning the best methods and approaches to make the system better and better.
Repeat This Every Day
So, say this mantra to yourself every day. Believe in it, see yourself working out when you say it, and you too will reap the benefits of a healthy life style. Remember, you can establish and stick to your routine when you force yourself to exercise even when every part of your body and mind doesn’t want to. After two to three months of committing to your exercise routine, it will become a part of your every day life, where if you don’t make the gym three to five times a week, you start to miss it.