Updated: Jul 26, 2019
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. – Aristotle”
As a triathlon coach I have had the privilege of working with and observing so many great athletes from all different walks of life. Sure, some of them have good genetics but there are also other pieces and external factors that we can control to help with long term success. The number one success factor that I have observed the most is consistency. It’s what these athletes do repeatedly on a day in and day out basis, over and over again that allows them to have long term success. A well-designed training plan followed consistently will maximize results. A well-designed plan has the proper mix of stress and recovery and ensures the right type of training occurs at the right time.
If you struggle with consistency the good news is that you can control it! It’s not a skill or talent, you have control over being consistent with your workouts. The goal is to always follow the training plan as best you can. But the reality is, life happens, kids get sick, work meetings run late and that’s okay. We’re human! When life happens a good target is to get in 85% of your planned workouts any given week. Always make a note of what your key workouts are and focus on getting those in.
Always remember that if you're short on time, simply do a shorter workout. This may seem like a given, but we often think I don’t have time to get in my long run this week so it gets skipped all together. But the reality is, do you have time for a quick 30 minute run? The answer is most likely, yes. Rather than feeling discouraged about a missed/”red” workout think about how much better you will feel both physically and mentally about having done a shorter workout rather than nothing at all.
One of the key elements to success in endurance sports is putting in the work over time. Staying consistent over time leads to fitness gains and reduces the risk of injury so you can reach your full potential and have long term success!