Cultivating Consistency

Now, I’m a fitness professional, and I know from experience that anyone can exercise, but the people who are successful at achieving their goals are those who maintain consistency in their healthy habits.

In fact, the people who succeed at just about anything have one quality in common: commitment to consistency and hard work.

Another difference between successful and unsuccessful people? How they respond to failure. Buried is that insight, of course, is that the way they respond to failure is with–you guessed it–consistency: trying again. Trying harder, trying differently, trying every day.

Okay, you might ask, how do they do that? What makes them different that they can pick themselves up and go again every time? They hold themselves accountable. They don’t just say, “I’ll try again later.” They say, “I’m going to try again for three hours, tomorrow, starting at one o’clock.” Procrastination is a temptation we all contend with, but successful people set deadlines for themselves, and build their lives around their priorities, rather than trying to squeeze them in on the side in between checking Facebook and catching up on Mad Men.

I want to share a video with you about consistency nd commitment. It’s from Marie Forleo, who is a business coach who has inspired me to be better. The video is called, “How To Be Consistent: 5 Steps to Get Things Done, All The Time”

I especially like her point about “catching the wagon.” Too many of us view our progress as an all-or-nothing proposition, where the consequences of one big decision, for example, “I’ll never eat refined sugar again” are the life-changing event we’ve been waiting for, and if it doesn’t work out, all is lost. But truly, those big decisions are enacted as a long series of small, every day decisions.

If you make the wrong decision one day, you CAN make the right one the next, and the day after that, and the day after that–as long as you keep your mind on your goal, and hold yourself accountable for commitments you make to yourself.

To help me keep my goal in mind, I often turn to inspirational quotes. I’d like to share them with you, so I’ll link to them at my blog, here.

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Notes on consistency

“Busy people are not procrastinators. They set deadlines and force themselves to establish priorities.”

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”

“There are three ingredients to success: work hard, stick to it, and use common sense.” -Thomas Edison

“Always be one step ahead of your competition.”

“To be better than others, you must outwork them.”

“Notice what you’re getting from your actions. Review your progress regularly. Change your approach as needed.”

“The difference between successful and unsuccessful people is how they respond to failure.”

“When you have a big enough dream, you don’t need a crisis.”

“What are your core values, and what do they mean to you?”

“Three ingredients for success in physical rehab are, commitment, consistency, and convenience of exercise.”

“Demand more from yourself.”

“Anything worth achieving is worth working for.”

“Do you view exercise as a lifetime goal, or rather as a short term goal?”

“You can always better your personal best.”

“Visualize your fitness program.”

“We all have the same 24 hours per day. Why does one person get stuff done, while the other person procrastinates? ¬†You can carve out five minutes to fifteen minutes, and you can cut back on five to fifteen minutes of activities that are not pointing you in the direction of your goals.”

Train Like a Pro

The goal of a golf swing is to strike the ball with power and a high degree of accuracy.

A typical 18 hole practice round of golf will take six hours. The pro golfer will arrive one to two hours before tee time. They’ll spend the first hour with the fitness trainer, the second with the swing coach, then play 18 holes. If they are a right handed golfer, they will carry a left handed 7 iron in their bag. At some point they will play golf with the off club to create balance in the body.

Pro golfers don’t merely work harder than they once did; now they are working smarter, using science and technology to enhance the way they train and perform. It isn’t enough to eat right and put in the hours; you need to have the best PhDs, athletic trainers, stretch coaches, swing coaches, acupuncturists, massage therapists, holistic nutritionists, movement specialists, and psychologists on board as well.

Today’s athletes emphasize sport-specific training over generalized conditioning. There is an increasing use of biometric sensors. Equipped with heart-rate monitors, GPS, and gyroscopes to measure not just performance, but also fatigue level.

Golfers can bee hooked up to sensors to determine the efficiency of the golf swing, making sure that they are using the correct sequence to swing a golf club.

Today’s athletes spend the off-season working on their game in different training environments and sports, making sacrifices, and trying to do what their competition won’t.

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Back Pain: How to prevent it

The leading cause of back pain is poor posture. Being mindful of your posture is always a good thing for your back. One good thing to do to make sure that your posture is engaged is to eliminate bad exercise and movement patterns that you perform in the gym.

If your job requires sitting or bending forward, then the exercise program at the gym should counterbalance that by providing more extension exercises. As you know, Golf is a flexion sport. More flexion at the gym is not good.

If you’re doing chest flies or chest presses or crunches on the floor, you could be shortening your pectoralis minor muscle in such a way that it causes a rounding of your shoulders and a muscle imbalance in your back.

The use of exercise machines does not help back pain either. Some machines, like the leg press, can cause you to hold your body in an unnatural position under load. Leg presses in particular can lead to herniated disks because of the way your hips are positioned while lifting heavy weight.

Something women in particular should be aware of is that during menstruation, your joints are actually looser. During this time, you need to be extra careful to maintain good posture and stability during exercise and during your golf swing. If you can’t decelerate the club slowly, you will hurt your body. Your looser joints can actually lead to what’s called “shearing” in your joints, and consequently to injury.

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