Long-Term Fitness: Trend vs. Truth
Getting fitness results isn’t as hard as you might think. What can be challenging is knowing the best way to hold onto those results for life.
Why? Because the behaviors that may seem the most fruitful because of the fast results they bring, actually aren’t the best choices for long-term fitness success.
Let’s examine three fitness “trends” and compare them to the “truths” that actually support longevity in fitness.
Intensity vs. Consistency
- Going all in and hitting the gym every day for 30 days to do intense workouts that leave you on the floor sweating, only to develop an achy knee and trouble sleeping, then throwing in the towel.
- Or taking a consistent approach and training 3 days a week, every week for a year, for a total of 156 workouts.
We like option number 2 the best! When talking about your long-term fitness, consistency always wins over intensity. You want to be consistent in the number of sessions you do, as well as the kind of workouts you do. Doing intense fitness is unsustainable for most people in the long run and sees compliance fall off at a much faster rate than a consistent and sustainable approach to working out.
So rather than going “all in” on your workouts, think about what you can be consistent with for the rest of your life.
Restriction vs. Balance
We’ll talk about how restriction and balance relates to your nutrition specifically. Restricting calories, macronutrients, the times you eat, or food groups can be a way to get really fast results from your nutrition. Restriction can help up lose weight in a short period of time, we would be lying if we said it wouldn’t bring results.
But what restriction can’t be is sustainable. Studies have proven that restrictive diets almost always end in people going back to old habits and regaining weight.
So what approach is best for long-term results for your nutrition? Balance! A balanced approach to nutrition that does not restrict any foods, but rather, supports your function, purpose, and mental acuity, is key to sustainable nutrition. Focus on quality foods in appropriate quantities for your goals, rather than making foods “bad” or “off-limits”.
Hard Work vs. Smart Work
Here’s the deal. In the short term, harder work will get you better results. If you take two people and have one do really tough workouts every day and one do a balance of challenging and easier workouts, the “hard” approach will produce the best body composition and metabolic changes after 30 days. However, if you follow those same two people for a full year, the “smart” work approach will win.
Why? It is essential to balance harder and easier efforts for proper recovery and results for the long-term. Going hard every day will eventually cause burnout and see results plateau, and even regress. In comparison, smart work will give you adequate challenge to drive adaptation, while supporting technique, skill, and recovery with some easier training days.
At OPEX Gyms, we don’t only provide you with the workouts you need to get results, we also make sure that your fitness is sustainable for life!