You are not one great or amazing workout away from your goal. You are 30 good workouts in close proximity away from hitting your goal(s).
“You are one great workout away from feeling better”
“You are one great workout away from being a better you”
“You are one great workout away from reaching your goals”
I’d challenge you to go back through your Instagram posts in the last month and I bet you will find one of these images. It’s an upfront positivity boost, sure. But is one great workout really going to make that big of an impact on your life? Sadly, no. I got hit in the face with this concept while watching a youtube video of a professional triathlete who said “You’re not one great workout away from winning a race, you are 30 good workouts in close proximity away from winning a race.” I found a lot of intellect in this quote, both personally and in our work space at FT. Let’s focus first on the “one great workout away” concept…
This type of thinking is part of what I call, the one and done mentality. I’ve had a great workout, now I can go eat this cheesesteak. Or, I had a great workout today, so I’m good for the week. It’s a fundamental loss of attention for whatever your goal is. You did not earn that cheesesteak with one workout. There is a tendency to compensate in our diet/nutrition when we have a “killer workout”. Train more/harder, eat more. The “one great workout away” mentality also usually adds an element of injury risk. Take for example my Christmas Eve workout. I got home around 1pm from work, and had planned to do a Brick workout (Bike and Run combo). It’s the offseason and Bricks are generally held for the end of a training cycle, close to a race. But I had 4 parties to attend in 5 days. So, 20 year old me (I’m actually 33) said “I’m going to crush this workout in anticipation of the holiday and burn a ton of calories.” Biking steady state for 15 minutes and mixing in 3-4 minute hill runs(3x for 60 minutes) is a sure fire way to make my foot/ankle injury flare back up. I paid the price for that “one workout” for a week thereafter. There is no quick fix, or magic pill to help you be fit or look better, or have washboard abs. All of your workouts can’t be great. It’s fundamentally impossible to have 100% great workouts. If that would be true, you’re not working out with enough frequency and duration. There have been so many times in the last 12 years where a client came in and wasn't feeling 100%. But you know what? We got through it. They did their workout and it wasn’t great, but just plain old good. They worked out as part of a bigger picture plan over the course of time.
30 Good workouts:
On January 2nd, 2019 I received an Evernote email copied from a client at FT. 30 days of exercise consistently. That is goal oriented. That is effective exercise. That will be the one thing to help them get closer to the long term goal that he/she has. Not one amazing workout that left them on the floor in a puddle of sweat-but 30. 30 consistent workouts that are just plain old “good” workouts. Achievement of a goal generally isn’t a pretty process. Sure the results can be flashy, but the process is grueling, hard work. Building on the above paragraph, which one of these scenarios is more likely to work over the long run: “I had a great workout in which I burned 850 calories and then I had a cheat day where I ate Pizza, drank 3 beers, had pretzels, bagels, etc.” OR “ I’m 2 weeks into working out consistently and I think I’ll have 2 slices of pizza tonight for dinner.” We can apply this principle to diet and nutrition, too. 30 straight days of eating, for the most part, healthy is better than one great day of healthy eating followed up by one day of not so great eating.
If you are lacking in endurance or cardio, diet and nutrition, strength and fitness, or you just want to run your first 5k – you’re not one great workout away from achieving any of those things.
You are 30 GOOD workouts away.