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The 5 rules for consistent workout sessions

Not everyone finds it easy to be consistent with workout sessions. So, we have come up with five commandments (plus an extra one) to release the athlete hidden in each of us.

It could be said that the world of fitness is divided into two halves: on the one hand, we have the real die-hards who never skip a workout session and who constantly monitor their results – those people who wonder how they will survive five days without working out when they are hit with the first seasonal flu.

On the other hand, we have the so-called “fickle” ones, who belong to an infinite number of micro-worlds – from the eternal dreamers who give up immediately if they don't see instant results to the “not today, maybe tomorrow” types, to those who do 5 minutes of exercise for every 20 minutes of rest. It's a way of thinking that we struggle to find a way out of. A mental environment from which it is hard to find an escape route: sport is good for us, and our body needs to move in order to be healthy.

  1. Don't expect everything all at once

The first few weeks of working out are the most critical, because this is the time when our motivation is most at risk of crumbling under the weight of fatigue, and the illusion that all it takes is a couple of sessions to achieve all our goals. Let's start moving away from the idea that everything happens immediately – it's bad for our self-esteem – and get back to reality. The results will come, but only with consistent working out and dedication. This is why it is crucial to set intermediate goals: a few kilos of weight lost in the first few months, and a weight on the bar that is reasonable and above all proportionate to our capacities. To sum it up: the best is yet to come... but slowly.

  1. Choose the workout that's right for you

Don't fall into the trap of underestimating yourself and think that you're just not made for working out. There is always something suitable for each and every one of us, so let's put ourselves to the test. Select a sporting discipline you feel suited to: physical activity is like an item of clothing, and it has to fit properly in order for you to slip it on easily and consistently. It is pointless to attempt to force yourself into an outfit that is just too tight, or which isn't your style.

The key to consistent workout sessions lies in doing what you enjoy. It's not a good idea to feel forced to work out, nor is it realistic to try to stick with a sport that bores you. There are so many worlds within the universe of fitness – our job is to find what we like best. The important thing is to remember that everybody is different, so we must make a point of focusing on ourselves and not on the friend next to us, who may have a different metabolism from ours (usually better!). If your goal is to lose weight, don't weigh yourself every day: it makes no sense and is very demotivating. Results rely on consistency, and for this reason, it is a good idea to wait at least a month between measurements.
  1. Why together is better

Who is better placed to understand and support us when our willpower falters than those who sweat, toil and work out alongside us every time we work out? The fight to achieve fitness is a battle that is sometimes difficult to win alone. For this reason, having one or more allies by your side can be a winning strategy in working out consistently, a less spiritual equivalent to fitness nirvana. Try to get a friend or partner involved in your workout routine, and you're guaranteed to feel less lonely and more motivated.

  1. Don't underestimate the setting

Our surroundings have never been a secondary factor: running along Miami Beach between the palms with the sun beating down on us is worlds away from toiling through the fog in the most far-flung suburbs. For this reason, whether you're working out in a fitness club or any other indoor or outdoor environment, it is essential to find a place that reflects our needs, a place where we feel at ease.

Another important element of the setting is the music. It doesn't matter whether you like AC/DC or pop – regardless of your tastes, the important thing is that your music gets you pumped up and working at the right rhythm, to tackle your workout in the best possible way. Imagine the boredom of running without the right soundtrack in your ears!
  1. Change things slowly

As soon as we start working out, we sign a tacit agreement with ourselves that leads us to believe that from now on, we will never again give in to temptation. But sadly, all these good intentions are destined to go down in flames at the first birthday party or graduation we are invited to.

A good workout is a write-off if we go on to stuff ourselves with junk food, and it's equally true that we are unlikely to immediately give up all our old habits. Instead, we must tackle our vices with consistency, and change a little at a time. This will make giving up unhealthy habits less hard to bear. Slow changes to the things you eat are always much better than strict crash diets and enable you to maintain your new regime in the long term.

  1. Your secret ingredient

We admit that we might have told a white lie: we said we only had five commandments, but we're all different to each other, and we'd like there to be a sixth personal commandment, which each of us can decide for ourselves. Only we truly know ourselves deep down, and as such, only we can discover the last secret ingredient that will make our workout routine unique, and above all, keep it consistent.

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