Keys to Success in Developing Workout Consistency

Posted by Beth Coons on March 25, 2024

Consistency is by far the most vital component of accomplishing your fitness goals. As we are creatures of habit, the more we practice something the more natural it becomes. The following is an excerpt from my favorite book “Atomic Habits” by James Clear:

“Improving by 1 percent isn’t particularly notable-sometimes it isn’t even noticeable—but it can be far more meaningful, especially in the long run. The difference a tiny improvement can make over time is astounding. Here’s how the math works out: if you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you’ll end up 37 times better by the time you’re done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you’ll decline nearly down to zero. What starts as a small win or a minor setback accumulates into something much more.“ 1

Here are two main keys to building consistency and a few ideas to help you to make them happen.

Workout the same time of day no matter what.

  • Schedule ahead. I schedule my work out time in my planner.

  • Wake up and go to bed at the same time every day. Creating consistent sleep patterns will create more energy and help your body adapt to your new daily routine.

  • Find a trigger that reminds you to work out next. For me it is getting up and putting on my work out clothes, brushing my teeth and letting the dogs out sets the trigger for me to get in the car and head to the gym. It might be leaving work and heading straight to the gym or getting the kids to bed and going to the basement for your workout.

  • Prepare in advance. Set out your workout clothes the night before or pack the bag for after work. I make sure my air pods are in my bag and charged. I also have a back-up pair of headphones in my work out bag.

Build and follow a workout program.

  • Have a program written out and ready to go. Programs make it easier to stay on track because you will not have to think about what you are doing at the gym. Most programs follow a 4-week cycle. The cycle lets you learn the move and build on it. It also keeps you from getting bored.

  • Have a designated spot to work out - gym, basement, garage, wherever. Make sure it is set up with what you need for your work out. I work out at the gym as there are less distractions than at home - no laundry!

  • Track your progress. Keep a record of your workouts, nutrition, and measurements. Use a notebook, application on your phone, or just in your notes on your phone. This will help you stay accountable and see how far you have come.

    I keep track of my workouts in my planner and the specifics in my notes on my phone. I used to track my nutrition on My Fitness Pal however now I use Eat Love on the RAC app. I have not missed a day in over 3 years!

    Do not forget to celebrate your achievements and use any setbacks as a learning experience. Over the years I have used a large calendar in my kitchen and marked my workouts off with a big red X, it was so gratifying to see my weeks, then months, then year fill up.

  • Find an accountability partner. This was a necessity for me in the beginning, it not only made me accountable to be on time and not skip my work out, but it also made it more comfortable in a new place and fun. When one of us is out of town, we always ask each other how our work out was.

  • Make it the right workout for you. Find something you enjoy. Weightlifting, running, yoga, group classes, dancing, or swimming. I have over the years stayed consistent with something for about 7 years before I ventured off to learn something new.


Here is an additional personal challenge for you to help support your workout habit. If you are within ten feet of someone new make eye contact and smile. I guarantee you will make a new friend within the week. I was nervous and intimidated the first time I walked into the RAC, but within a week I had made friends on the fitness floor and within 6 months I had decided I would become a certified Personal Trainer at the RAC.


  1. Clear, James, Atomic Habits: Tiny Habits, Remarkable Results. (New York, NY; Penguin Random House, 2018) p. 15
Beth Coons

Beth Coons

Beth Coons received her ISSA Personal Trainer Certification last year and is excited to be at the RAC! She loves challenging her body as she ages and ensuring that she is better both physically and mentally than yesterday. If you see her, please throw her a smile and introduce yourself!

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