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Have you ever not gone to the gym because you didn’t have enough time to get your workout in?
Have you ever thrown out an entire day nutritionally because of one snack or one meal?
I am assuming that you have.
And I’m here to tell you that is not the best idea.
Are there plenty of legit reasons to skip the gym? Yes!
If you are sick, injured (some injuries can be worked around), have a special family event, etc. are all legit reasons to skip the gym…but…not having enough time is not one of them.
I find that guys are especially guilty of this.
“Back in my day I worked out for 2 hours per day, so what’s the point if I can’t do that anymore??”
A few things.
- You don’t need to workout 2 hours per day in the first place.
- There is so much you can do in 15-20 minutes.
- It’s likely your food that needs more work anyways.
When it comes to building a habit, the consistency and frequency of exposure are actually more important than the duration/intensity.
Going hard in the gym 2 days a week, but doing nothing the other 5 will not yield the results that most people want, nor help build a solid habit of being someone who exercises regularly.
But planning to do 5-10 minutes of planned physical activity, every day (assuming you are starting from ZERO) will help build the habit and the identity of someone who works out regularly.
It’s funny, people assume that trainers get to “work out all the time, and whenever they want”
It’s quite the opposite.
Personally, I lift 3-4 days per week for 30-45 minutes, do 1-2 cardio recovery/conditioning sessions that last 20-30 minutes, and that’s it.
I also work a job that routinely has me hitting 15,000 steps per day, and am aware of what I eat.
What do you think has a bigger impact on my health or my current physique? I would argue that lifting helps build the shape/look/strength of my body, but the daily movement and focus on diet is what controls the size/weight of the body.
So just because you are crunched for time, it doesn’t mean you need to skip the gym altogether. Even if you can’t get to the gym due to time – hit some bodyweight work. The possibilities are literally endless.
The same focus goes with nutrition.
Had a “bad” breakfast, so you just say the heck with it, and eat like crap the rest of the day?
Get a flat tire, and say the heck with it and slash the other 3?
It’s pretty much the same thing.
Those who are most successful with their relationship with food are those who practice true moderation, have at least some awareness of what they put in their bodies and are as consistent as possible.
True Moderation – enjoying a piece of birthday cake for your child’s birthday
Not Moderation – “only” eating 2 cookies every day, eating cake because it’s a stressful day at work, or having a nightcap to wind down from work (yes, daily drinking is not moderation, and will not help you with any physique goals.)
Awareness of Food – knowing what a high-calorie food is, and taking action to make an educated swap. Knowing that liquid calories are some of the easiest calories to cut – and doing it. Any many more basic examples.
No awareness of food – literally not knowing what is in what you eat. Or even worse is thinking you know and having no idea.
Consistent as Possible – have a holiday or birthday? Sweet, enjoy it and get right back to schedule the next day.
Not consistent as possible – “well, it’s my birthday week so I might as well start eating like crap now”….” well, it was my birthday and that was on a Thursday, so I might as well just enjoy the whole rest of the week”
“I’m going on this hardcore diet of kale baths and lemon shots to lose 10 pounds before Spring Break”
– the same person struggles with that same 10 pounds up and down their whole life…
I talk about it often, “play the long game” when it comes to nutrition/diet/exercise. Keep chipping away at it…
BUT you have to actually be chipping away at it too, or the long game is the really long game…
Build simple, sustainable habits, and build more on top of them. Do it consistently, do it knowingly, and good things will happen. It doesn’t have to be a 2-hour workout or kale and lemon enema cleanses…just do a little bit more or better than you are doing right now, and you will start to see changes.
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Stay healthy my friends,