SAY NO TO MAINTENENCE:
One question I get asked a lot is this: "What happens when you achieve a goal, what about maintenance?"
I am going to say straight away. I do not believe in maintenance, I believe in constantly pushing for the next goal. Maintenance leads to boredom, stagnation and ultimately going backwards.
For sure, when a goal is achieved take time to enjoy the moment and celebrate the achievement. But then set time aside to plan your next move, the next goal. The next thing that will make you grow.
In today's blog I want to talk about maintenance and the danger surrounding it. As well as how you can make sure you never stagnate. So, let's get into it:
What is maintenance and why is it a bad thing?
Maintenance can be found when you have achieved a goal, or when you don't have the time to focus on developing. For example, when you are in the middle of a race season, more on that later.
Most people view maintenance as a weight loss goal, so I have lost X amount of weight. Now I would like to stay the same. In my eyes this is never a good thing as old habits creep back in, you begin to slacken your discipline and you then begin to step backwards. So maintenance becomes regression.
When maintaining your fitness for a competitive season (in any sport). Things are different, as you spend the time off working on fitness and getting it to a competitive level. You then keep this fitness through your season, it is also worth noting here that you are not maintaining without a goal either. You have a number of events coming up that will keep you sharp, motivated and disciplined to stay as fit as you currently are.
If I am honest. I wouldn't use the term maintenance to describe an in season fitness goal if there was a better word.
So, now we have an idea of what maintenance is, let's talk about achieving the goal and celebrating the moment, this is where maintenance has the potential to kick in:
Celebrating the achievement:
Now I want to say here. When you achieve something that you have been targeting you should 100% celebrate this. There is no pleasure in moving onto the next goal and recognising how far you have come is so important when it comes to motivating yourself to be a better version of yourself.
But, it can be dangerous.
For example: I now have a camping stove, a bed and some pretty looking décor in my van. It would be easy to camp in that and I am able to do that with comfort. But, it is far from the finished product that I have set my sights on and I must recognise this. Simply just enjoying it as it is could lead to me not getting anything finished. So I take the time to enjoy it right now but know I want more.
Another example of this in fitness would be dropping the weight you wanted to drop. Fantastic and a huge well done to you. But how are you going to keep it off. As mentioned above, discipline slips and you get complacent. You need a new challenge.
This doesn't have to be dropping more weight, this can be something that will keep you motivated to keep it off.
Sign up to a race, an event or dedicate yourself to getting even fitter.
There is always a new ambition, whatever kind of mindset you have:
Academic, business, competitive, fitness.
There is something out there that will make you want to move forwards!
So how do we find it?
We look at our first goal, why did we want to achieve it? For example:
"I want to lose weight to be able to play with my son for longer"
This is a goal that has a powerful connection with you, so you will naturally care about this. Once you have achieved that goal, how about changing it to:
"I want to build on my fitness and be stronger, so I can help to improve my sons health while still playing sport with him".
This still gives you that emotional connection but it also allows you to advance the initial goal.
A few other examples could be (red=from, green=to):
From "I want to get fitter and faster on my bike so I can ride further". To "I am going to plan and train for a 50 mile ride, and do it at the end of the month (set a date)".
From "I want to lose weight so I can run faster". To "I am going to try and up my average minute miles by 1mph by the end of the month".
When it comes to avoiding maintenance and always progressing. I want you to understand that this is a very personal journey. Due to this the speed at which you do it is completely up to you. This blog was designed to show you how, and to also show you why you do not want to stay still.
I hope you have found it usedful, and informative.
Have a great day.