Consistency is the top dog in fitness. You can do a poor workout, but if it's consistent, you'll see the benefits. The better the workout the quicker those benefits will come. If your diet is poor, if it's consistently poor and you keep consistently, incrementally, adding adding to your workout, you will see the benefits. You many not do any exercise at all, providing your diet (I mean overall daily food consumption not fad diet) is consistent you will remain at the same level.
Here are some tips that I've found to work in my decade and more of training. I've had all the time I need to train, I've also had not enough. I've had all the kit, again, I've not had enough. Hopefully my experience will help you to achieve your goals. A word of warning, you can't just switch these tips on. They take an actual effort but will one day become a habit. In no particular order:
Set a time to workout, don't wait until you've found time. Ever had those occasions where you want to workout but can't find the time or don't know when to workout so wait for the right time. Ever usually find that 10 - 20 mins into the right time you realise it's the right time and have already lost 10 -20 min and maybe more to get ready? Plan a time to workout. Write out your day if you have to, juggle stuff around to make time. That way you can pre-prepare. Have your kit ready or know in 10 mins you need to be making your way to a workout. Making time, saves time.
Make a routine. Trying to plan each workout as it comes is better than no plan at all. Planning out a week is better and month better still. How about making the workout so routine you don't need to plan. Your workouts could be at the same time everyday or at least the same time on each particular day of each week. For example, workout legs on Monday mornings but do a Yoga class on Tuesday nights. Knowing workouts are coming in advance, as above, you can prepare and save time. Your mind will also unconsciously prepare itself for what is to come and your less likely to double book yourself knowing what is coming and when.
Get into your gear. Buy some workout clothes or set a particular, breathable and comfortable set aside. Before a workout put the gear on and only this gear. This is not a strict rule but better to do one way round than another. Don’t wear your daily clothes to workout in but you can wear your workout clothes for daily life. The act of putting on your gear is as much mental as it is physical perpetration. It's also an admission that you will do a workout in the coming moments and ownership of your choice. If your the kind of person that goes to the gym or run when you get back from work or on the way home from work, try getting changed before you leave. It doesn't save time in reality but feels like it as you can walk in and get going. You will also feel that working out is more compulsory than optional.
Missed a workout? Don't worry. If, for whatever uncontrollable reason, you miss a workout. Be it illness, traffic, work, kids birthday. It's OK. Get back onto your workouts tomorrow or make up for it at the weekend. Better yet, if you can't do a full workout do a short version or a quick HIIT session. Any workout is better than no workout. The only exception to this rule is with injury. It's better to rest if you need, until you are sure you are capable. This is not me saying you can miss as many workouts as you like or an excuse to not go to the gym tonight because you don't feel like it. Try not to miss many workouts in a row. If you consistently (that word again) miss workouts you may need to reschedule.
Get it out of the way. If your days are particularly hap hazard or you’re the go-to employee where the workload gets added to by the minute, even planing in time for a workout could be an issue. In such situations you may be better off getting your workout done before there's a chance for other things to get in the way. You could workout first thing in the morning or workout as soon as you get home. Don't give yourself a chance to sit down and open a bottle of wine. Get the workout done, it's satisfying to get another tick in your to do list.
Multi task. If you can't find or make time, there may be ways to overlap or squeeze out more time. If some tasks can be done together you may be able to save some time. This method is primarily useful for home training. A little strategy I used was to cook and workout. Do your sets and reps but in your rest periods get a little cooking done. For example, do the reps of sit ups, in the rest time get the chopping board out, do the next reps, get the vegetables out, do the reps, start to chop what you can. You need to think about what to do and when but doing so can steal a few precious minutes. If cooking is a complex recipe, try some housework.
Try harder. Hear me out on this one. It may very well be that you are making progress but your aim is to far ahead and you're losing the drive to work. Maybe you need a stepping stone goal that's attainable but just a little out of reach. You're more likely to work a little harder to get to your goal, feel the satisfaction of completing another milestone and have some more confidence to get to the next goal. Training takes time and can often be slow to see results. Whatever motivation got you started may be a distant memory. In times like these you may need to reacquire why you started. Is it a holiday, a dress size, or time per km. Again perhaps some stepping stone goal would help nicely. I've been there. I've also been in a position where I've achieved my goal and just carried on aimlessly. It's easy to think of more goals here. Do more of the exercise, go further or hold for longer. The internet is full of challenges to sink your teeth into. Either way trying a little harder could open the gates for the motivation to keep on going.
Not everything will work for you. Try all of them or some of them but work at them. Hopefully with time, these tips will become normal behaviour. There are other ways to remain consistent no doubt. As a small sample of evidence, for me these methods work. If you find anything else worked for you please share your ideas.