It's March of 2023 now. The gyms are starting to be less busy and less packed. I've seen many new years where people stampede their way into gyms hoping to finally get their dream body. These people are energized from the New Year and have a deep sense of motivation. The only issue is after a couple of months, in some cases weeks, they stop going to the gym. For whatever reason, they no longer have the desire to exercise and achieve their dream body. Well, I have been one of these people. I now realize one of the things most people lack that would allow them to have success in their fitness. This one thing is consistency.
Do you know what Kobe Bryant, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Tom Brady all have in common? Apart from being my favorite players of all time, from their respective sports, they are all known for their consistency. They built their reputations as men who show up day in and day out. They show up everyday and put in the work. They put in the hours. However, many people forget that all of these athletes were once amateurs. They didn't magically wake up once day and have the ability to skillfully shoot a basketball, shoot a soccer ball, or throw a football.
Kobe Bryant, in an interview (Minute 2:25) with Lewis Howes for the School of Greatness, talks about how he was a horrible basketball player when he first started playing. He was 11 years old when he joined a popular summer league in Philadelphia. He scored ZERO points the entire summer! He played the entire summer too. He wasn't just sitting on the bench. He didn't score any points because he was just simply bad. It didn't matter that his dad was an NBA player. The skill of playing great basketball is not passed down threw genetics. We are talking about one of the greatest basketball players of all time here. However, this motivated him to improve. He decided he would work on his game consistently. Day in and day out, he would put in the blood, sweat, and tears. Eventually, two years later, he became the best player in the state of Pennsylvania. He would go on to win 5 NBA championships alongside many other accolades in the sport of basketball. He would credit his ability to outwork his opponents CONSISTENTLY as the main reason for his success. Miss you Mamba!
(Pictured above: Kobe Bryant)
Cristiano Ronaldo wasn't a coveted talent either. He wasn't known internationally until he was noticed by Sir Alex Ferguson, one of the world's greatest soccer coaches, during a scrimmage game his team Sporting had against Manchester United. Even at United, which is also one of the great historic teams in England, he was still rough around the edges. He was not considered a great player just yet. However, he gained a reputation for being a hard and consistent worker. You were not going to outwork that young man from Portugal. Sam Cooper, a writer from Business Insider, describes how a teammate told him that Ronaldo used to spend so much time training that Sir Alex Ferguson used to force him to go home. Today he is known around the world for his greatness. People assume he was naturally gifted. If you ask Ronaldo, he credits his success to his consistency on and off the pitch. I mean this man is still playing at 38. He also has 5 UEFA Champions League titles under his belt. You can't do that without consistency.
(Pictured above: Cristiano Ronaldo)
Tom Brady is the greatest football player of all time, in my opinion. He has 7 Super bowl rings to prove his greatness. However, another fact that adds to his great story of success is how his potential was overlooked by most NFL teams. Ryan Gaydos, a sports writer from Fox News, describes how Tom Brady was famously picked with the 199th selection in the 2000 NFL draft by the New England Patriots. Tom Brady, the GOAT, was selected in the 6th round. That means that there were 5 rounds and 198 players selected by teams before the Patriots decided to choose Tom Brady. If that's not crazy, I don't know what is. Still, after being drafted, Tom Brady still had to prove himself. He also gained a reputation for working hard and giving the sport of football his 100%. He got his chance when his teammate Drew Bledsoe went down with an injury. He took the opportunity and never looked back. As of now, he has finally retired after 23 long seasons. You don't think consistency had to do with his longevity in the league? It did, not only in his longevity, but also in his overall success. His consistency in his diet, in his training, and in his recovery all played their part. Whether you love him or hate him, one thing you can't do is deny his success. He is undeniable.
(Pictured above: Tom Brady)
All these examples of the importance of consistency were athletes, but consistency is important in all aspects of life. Whether you want to be a good parent, a good partner, a good business owner, a good employee, a good leader, or a good human being, it does not matter. You have to choose to be consistent. It is hard to be successful when you put in the effort one day and then not do anything the other. It's important to keep chucking along. Think of a lumber jack cutting down an oak tree back in the days where their only options were an axe and a manual hand saw. Do you think it was easy cutting down one of the strongest species of trees? No, it was not. I don't have to be a lumberjack to know that. Nevertheless, you had to take the axe and blow by blow, you would slowly progress. Overtime, the oak came down. The lumberjacks didn't get discouraged because they knew what to expect. They knew it took consistent effort with slow progress, but eventually they would succeed. That is why many people are not going to the gym anymore. That is why they fail to get into shape. That is why they don't have the body they want. They didn't prepare for the long journey. They didn't prepare themselves for the moment after their motivation runs out. They didn't realize the importance of consistency.
"The oak is not felled at one blow."- Spanish Proverb