This Valentine’s Day, we’re taking time to consider the most important relationship in your life. No, not your husband or wife, girlfriend or boyfriend, but your training program. Day in, day out, your Coach is there guiding you along, encouraging you to improve and, just occasionally, testing your limits. You may not have thought about it in this way before, but your relationship with training, like any other can go through ups and downs, highs and lows, as training expert David Wiener explains.
Stage 1: A New Romance (finding a style of training you can get on with)
From bodyweight training to group cycling, yoga or pilates, when it comes to finding a style of exercise you enjoy, there’s so much choice out there. The key to finding a training style you enjoy is to try as many as you can. Like dating, it’s unlikely you’re going to get on with them all, but there will be one (or more!) which really stand out, and this could be ‘The One’. When you find ‘The One’ you’ll know; you’ll feel totally exhilarated, excited and always ready for more. You’ll be so enthusiastic, you’ll want to train all day, every day. The progress and development comes thick and fast, your muscles are growing, your fitness improving and the weight is falling off. You’re happier than you’ve ever been and you wonder why you didn’t start sooner. After another rewarding date with your Coach, you can’t help but think, “this is it, this is how I become the greatest version of myself!”
Stage 2: The Honeymoon Period (you just can’t get enough!)
When you’ve whittled down the options to just one and committed to it for the long haul, you’ll enter the honeymoon period. At this time, you may feel like all you want to do is exercise, you’ll look forward to it, think about it all the time, and countdown to your next session. You’ll give your all each time you train and the results will start to show. Some days, your Coach infuriates you like nothing else, but you know it has the best intentions, so you stick with it. Things aren’t always easy, but you and your training program have reached that comfortable stage where you know when you need to give each other space. You’re looking ahead to the future and anticipating excitedly your personal and physical development.
Stage 3: We need a break! (the difficult times)
Post honeymoon phase, real life starts to set in, and you may find yourself contending with life events that could make you skip training sessions - think Christmas, birthdays, summer holidays and late nights out with friends and colleagues. The gains aren’t as obvious now and you wonder how you ever hit those PBs and if you’ll ever get close to them again. You may start to question your commitment, and before you know it, you’ve fallen out of love with training and are ‘taking a break’. During this stage, training could even become a chore and something to dread. Your relationship with training seems to have lost its spark.
Stage 4: Getting back together (rekindling the love)
When it comes to regular exercise, and the many physical and mental benefits it brings, the answer is always yes. You need it in your life, and you really can’t live without it. The sooner you realise this, the better; it’s never too late to get back on track and recommit. You’ve had a long hard look at yourself, made some adjustments and got your mojo back. You’ve realized that training is for you, after all, and you vow never to consider giving up again. The obstacles that threatened to derail your progress have been successfully surmounted, the period of plateauing successfully overcome. You’re back on the straight and narrow, ready to settle into a long, rewarding relationship with the one thing you hate and love in equal measure.
It’s at this time that you’ll be able to work through any issues you’ve had in the past, forging a long-term, sustainable relationship which fits into your lifestyle and that you can stick to. You’ll want to make time to exercise and again look forward to it. You’ll miss it when you need to skip a session, and exercise will no longer feel like a chore – it will be something you treasure and love, helping you to love and appreciate your body, so that others will follow suit and love and appreciate you too.
So there you have it, a committed relationship doesn’t have to be romantic. It’s time to fall in love with your training regime and embrace the ups and downs that your relationship with exercise can bring… Give your relationship with exercise your all; one thing’s for sure, you’ll never regret it! Ready to find your perfect match?