Everyone has their own approach to their regime but there are certain qualities that you will find are universal to any successful workout/diet plan.
1. Set long term AND short term goals
It is incredibly important to have something to aim for, and often this is something that happens naturally once you start training - whatever you’re training for. But these big goals can often be daunting and off putting. Your long term goal might be to run a half marathon but along the way you will need to set ‘short term goals eg. running 6 miles or running consecutive 9 minute miles. These ‘mini goals’ are a subspecies of your main aim - in this case the half marathon - but that doesn't mean they are any less important. In fact they are MORE important because they have PREPARED you for race day. Which brings us on to point number 2….
2. Preparation is King
The most important part of any training is the preparation that happens before the event; this includes physical and dietary prep. Mo Farrah didn’t wake up one day and have the mental and physical ability to be an Olympian. His training beforehand was what allowed him to perform when it mattered and this is true of any sport or physical activity: bodybuilders train for years to create their bodies. No matter what your goal you need to invest in preparing for it.
3. Track Your Progress
You need to maintain momentum throughout your training and the only way to make sure you are aware of a plateau or an off day is to note down your progress. Whether your goal is to lift more weight or run further/ faster or get leaner -track your progress. We want to stress that this doesn’t mean you should beat yourself up if you’re not on point everyday but have a record of where you started and how you’re progressing.
4. Always be willing to learn
Nobody knows everything there is to know about fitness and nutrition so be open to listening to what has worked for others. That doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for you but having other viewpoints can be helpful especially if you are trying a new exercise.
5. Find inspiration to maintain self-motivation
The best motivator you have is yourself but sometimes you need a little help to maintain your drive. Consider what inspires you or who inspires you. Find an autobiography of someone you admire, or an Instagram account that provides positive reinforcement (we recommend our one!) and keep reminding yourself that it won’t be easy but it will be worth it.
6. Be OK with taking a bit of downtime
Sometimes you just need a day off, whether its to recover physically, mentally, or both! Your body will let you know when its time to take a step back, listen to it and enjoy the time away from training. Don’t feel guilty about having a bit of respite, you’ve earned it.
7. Do it because you enjoy it
A healthy lifestyle should never, ever feel like a prison sentence. If you want a treat here and there, have one! If you need a break from your training regime, take it! The only way you will keep up with the goals you set yourself is to enjoy the process of reaching them. Don’t become obsessive because that negativity will bleed into other areas of your life.
We'd love to hear what principles you follow. Post them to us in the comment section or on social media and we might add them to this list!