True statement? ... I suppose it depends on what we are referring to. In the world of fitness, for most people trying to get back into it, I think it is important to remember the story of the tortoise and the hare. The tortoise always wins... Why? He didn’t go big ... he went slow and steady... and he won the race. However, all too often, I see people (particularly who have been out of the fitness game for a while) jump in Hare style, going big from day one or setting ‘go big’ goals, only to find him/herself back at square one moments, days, or weeks later. Why is this? We have been unmotivated for weeks or even months, haven’t worked out or lifted a thing, barely ourself off the couch. Suddenly we get this overwhelming sense of motivation and we are ready to make changes. So we get up, get super excited, and hit the gym... maybe A LOT... and hard... and the thing is... you can’t go from 0-100 without acceleration... When we try to go big too fast in the world of fitness, I see one of two things always happen. 1. We end up hurt...excessively sore or injured, and are left to deal with yet another setback - right back on the couch, until the next gust of motivation sinks in. OR 2. We set goals so large that we can’t realistically obtain them, only to find our self quickly at failure, and then we just figure “what the heck”, give up, and hit the couch again.
Let’s talk about option 1 first. Like I said, I see it happen all the time. People FINALLY get motivated and they get this go big or go home mentality. They start with this plan to workout EVERYDAY... As if they think they can make up for lost times... So they jump in start working out in excess....doing it all... “I gotta hit bootcamp 3 times this week, and heavy lifting 5 days this week, and I gotta log 1 hour on the treadmill all 7days”... The alternative is that while maybe they are not planning double day workouts - but rather when they do show up to the gym they just go all out with maximum efforts right away. Often, what happens to most people who go from nothing to a whole lot, is they end up over training, over fatigued, excessively sore, or even injured. When this happens they end up right back where they started... On the couch - nursing their excessively sore and injured bodies. In some cases maybe that one super duper intense workout hits them so hard they have to take the next three or four days off. However, wouldn’t it have been better and more appropriate to scale the intensity back just a little to ensure the ability to still hit another three or four workouts that week? In the long run - you end up with four or five workouts consistently as apposed to only one per week, while limping around the rest of the week. Likewise, if we set more realistic expectations on our body, hit a few solid workouts without over doing it - then maybe after a few weeks we are feeling better, stronger, faster, and then we can add that fourth day or fifth day. In the end, the person who is able to consistently maintain a commitment to fitness is going to have more success then the person who is on and off the couch.
Let’s also consider option 2. This is the person who spends several months being “too busy” to workout. After a sudden gust of motivation kicks in, for whatever reason, they suddenly decide they are going to go to the gym five, six or maybe even all seven days in the week. Well the thing is - this isn’t a realistic time commitment so week one or maybe week two they already fall short on their goal. So then they feel like a failure and rationalize, “well I already missed one day, what’s one more”... which turns into the rest of the week, until they are right back where they started... on the couch. I think it is all about setting small, realistic, obtainable goals, so that we can celebrate our wins. So IF you haven’t had the time or motivation to hit the gym once in the past two months, then it would be more reasonable to commit yourself to maybe two times per week starting out. If you hit both workouts then you can be excited, celebrate that success, be proud of yourself, and feel like you won. Now maybe next week you can plan for three workouts. Hit those three no problem? Still feeling good? Awesome - the week after that plan for four workouts. It’s all about setting ourselves up for success so that we can feel successful, get excited, and want to continue moving forward. This also leads to consistency...and I feel that when it comes to fitness, consistency over a long period of time (i.e. our whole life) is what will most likely win the race called being healthy and fit for life.