I saw a poster the other day that said ‘It’s a process, it’s a process, it’s a process; change takes time.’ and at the bottom it said, ‘When you don’t see immediate results, remember it’s a process that takes time!’ It made me think about how it relates to our fitness goals. We live in a world where we’re moving so quickly; we want instant gratification. Things that take time can be easily pushed aside. Fitness is one of those things that just takes time. I’ve had conversations with so many dance students, people in the gym, and friends about how hard it is to stick with new activities over the long term. It’s true, one dance class or one workout is probably not going to give you a huge change. You may have a great moment once in awhile where you reach a new milestone, but there is going to be a lot of uneventful work leading up to those moments. It will be frustrating.
Try to remember all those little steps are what add up over time to get you where you want to be.
So how are you going to stick with it and keep working towards your goals? I think things like pictures or videos are great tools to help keep us focused. You can’t see day to day changes in the body or in your overall performance. But you can use a selfie in order to look back and see your progress. Also, keeping track of your workouts or classes is a great tool to monitor your routine and stay accountable. It doesn’t need to be anything fancy: jotting down how many of each exercise you did, what weights you lifted, and how you felt during class will keep you accountable. In my youth Stretch and Strengthen classes at JOMDC we do a baseline workout. We count every rep and the students write it all down. At the end of the semester we repeat the workout and all the kids are shocked by their improvements!
This is something I encourage us all to do. Say you want to improve your plank (that’s holding at the top of a standard pushup position), next time, time yourself. How long can you hold a plank? Just 30 seconds? Not bad, write it down. Then, do it again the next day and the next day until you get to 2 minutes. It’ll happen sooner than you think, but you have to stay consistent and write it down. Seeing tangible progress can make all the difference. Most importantly, make sure you are enjoying what you’re doing! There are way too many options to get fit to feel stuck doing something you hate.
Stay tuned for next month when I begin preparation for my next figure competition, the NPC Maryland State/ East Coast Classic in June!
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