Creating your 4HB training schedule
If you’re on the slow carb diet, or you’re getting going on one of the gym workouts, or home workout programs described in The Four Hour Body, chances are you’re thinking about exercise- when, how, what, etc. Let’s take a look at how to get that into your schedule, and make it easy to keep it up.
Step 1 – Calendar it
The key starting point to getting going with any kind of exercise is to look on a simple calendar at when it will work to include it in your regular schedule. Choose 2 or 3 days a week, print that calendar, paste it on the wall and write on it! I find printed calendars much more inspiring than Outlook reminders, or similar digital options. Seeing it as part of your physical world makes it more real.
Step 2 – Make it easy, not hard, to win
Choose times that make sense with how you already live. Don’t attempt some entire life revolution based on setting 6am workouts if you normally get up at 10. Look at what reality is like right now for you, and find the times that make sense. Try your best to not move or cancel other existing commitments, with the exception of couch-time.
Step 3 – Set a time limit
On the exercise, and the calendar. You are not starting an exercise program that you will be doing when you are 93 years old. You are starting something that is a good idea today, this week, this month. The body gets used to the same thing, so its best to switch things up every 6 weeks or so. This also keeps it interesting for you. There is no definitive ‘best’ activity. They’re all great. They all yield slightly different results. With whatever you have chosen, commit to running this phase, or experiment, for 6 weeks.
Step 4 – Forget about changing anything
Now that you have picked your chosen activity, you have it fitting into your schedule, and you know how long you’re committed to it. So now it’s time to set and forget. Unless some incredibly life-changing event or circumstance comes along in the next 6 weeks, you’re doing what you’ve chosen until your time limit is up. You can always change to something different in a few weeks’ time, if you think it will be more fun, or get you better results. A big part of doing this is to become familiar with doing something over a set course of time – even if your activity doesn’t get you what you want, you’re building skill in doing an activity and following a program. That makes next time easier.
Step 5 – Do it, and measure it
This one is easy. Get going, cross off the days on your calendar (you printed it, right?) and record your results so you can see your progress. The weeks will fly by.
Step 6 – Analyze and re-plan
Only once you have reached the end of your calendar time limit, your ‘experiment zone’, are you then in a position to look back and make decisions about whether you would like to continue, or you would like to change. Only now do you want to be thinking about what else might give you great results, or what else might be more your style. Think about it, decide, and follow the 6 steps again.
Do you have a suggestion for getting going on an exercise plan? Or maybe some tips for sticking to one through those challenging first weeks? Share them below!