Ok, here is the typical scenario of your usual dedicated and determined gym goer:
Few months of top results
Stop training (distractions and life issues set in)
Wake up one day and…crap, i’m losing my look!
It all goes back to that old saying ‘ Build it in 3 months, lose it in a week’. But that is only towards those who train at a high level and when they stop for even short periods of time, they notice the changes. But for the average person it still applies. The key thing here is maintenance.
Stick with a realistic time goal and then promise yourself you will work out at a moderately hard to challenging level for that time.
The higher intensity will ensure that your workout is of value and your time is well spent.
Another trick that helps people guarantee their workout is to schedule it. If it is written in your day planner, you are more likely to stick to it.
You are also more likely to stay away from that time when other engagements begin to fill your schedule.
Begin your week by opening your calendar on Sunday night, immediately pencil in workout at times that fit your existing schedule.
As other things come up, you will know to avoid the already scheduled exercise time.
Research shows that people who schedule and write down their workouts are 40 percent more likely to stick to their workout goals.
If you can’t depend on your own motivation, try finding a workout partner.
People who exercise with a partner two or more times a week are 35 percent more successful at keeping their commitment to exercise over the long term.
It is uncertain if the attraction is the combination of socialization and exercise, or some other, guilt-filled reason. Whatever the reason, people who meet others to workout will stick with it longer than those who try to go it alone.
Cross training is another trick to regular training. Without further study of exercise adherence and exercise psychology, I cannot comment on why this is so. Perhaps the cross training, varying your type of exercise, helps to aid with boredom. Or maybe it keeps us from getting overuse injuries.
Do you really need to know why?
The bottom line is that people who vary their exercise between at least two activities are more likely to become lifelong, regular exercisers.
You can spend 10 minutes a day talking with friends, giving them excuses why you couldn’t fit exercise in today, or you could save those 10 minutes. Combine your 10 minutes from Monday and 10 from Tuesday. Use that 20 minutes for a moderately paced treadmill workout or a walk around the block.
If you do this regularly, without skipping or stopping, over the course of a year you will have walked off approximately 6 pounds.