Successfully Achieving your Health and Fitness Goals - Willpower Doesn't Work, Here’s What Does

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Successfully achieving your health and fitness goals - willpower doesn't work, here's what does. If you have fitness goals and health goals that you're getting after, why not set yourself up for success? Relying on willpower does not work for me, so I'm sharing what does work for me: precondition training. Let's go!

So I used to think that I had an unlimited supply of willpower. And the truth is is that after looking at that a little bit more closely and trying to think, Well, is this really true, at least for me? I started realizing that on some days I had an infinite supply of willpower, and on other days it was easily depleted.

And so for me, personally speaking, I have found that willpower is not a silver bullet when it comes to avoiding temptations that are not aligned with my fitness for longevity and overall health and fitness goals.

And so I wanted to share something with you that actually has worked for me. And this is so that perhaps if you feel like willpower is not something you can rely on every single time and it's not a silver bullet for you either, then this might be something that you can do instead.

At least be mindful of it so that you can use it when you need it instead of relying on willpower. All right, let's get into it.

So if willpower works for you, that's awesome. Great. Just keep doing what you're doing and you don't have to watch the video (or read this blog post) if you don't want to.

But for those of you who feel like on some days you have willpower and on other days you don't and it's easily depleted, then maybe you should keep watching / reading.

So, I have found that willpower exists on days where I feel I have a certain mindset, when my hormonal fluctuations are more balanced, and I am feeling good about my health and fitness goals and where I am with my progress.

And on other days I feel like willpower is just not cutting it. And on those days it's easy to cave in to temptations like maybe having that extra sugary treat or maybe skipping out on a workout or whatever it might be. Because, look, we're human, we're not robots. If we were, then it would be way easier. We wouldn't have to think about doing all the things that we need to be doing with keeping in mind our health and fitness.

All right.

So instead of willpower, what is working for me is what I like to call precondition training.

So preconditioned training is what enables me to keep willpower out of the equation. So I'm not relying on willpower and whether it decides to be plentiful that day or whether I am depleting it quickly and early on.  I don't have to rely on willpower whatsoever with precondition training. So preconditioned training is essentially you're setting a condition for which you can then do whatever you deem fun or a treat or exciting or caving in to temptation.

And I'm putting that in quotes because again, you don't necessarily have to cave in to temptation. I don't know that that's necessarily a healthy way of looking at things, but again, you do you.

But the point with this is that you need to complete x y z before you can do 123.


Let's give you some examples here, so it makes it more concrete.

So imagine now that you've been having your daily coffee, but when you do that, you don't get to your workout, maybe as a precondition.

You first do your workout and then you have your coffee. So maybe in order to have your coffee, the precondition is that you do your workout. Or maybe it's a walk. So I know that like for some people, maybe they don't feel like they should make the coffee at home.

Maybe spending however much you would spend on the coffee is worth it to you, because that way you can do your workout, right? So maybe you need to walk to your coffee shop, you get your workout in or your walk in, and then you have your coffee.

Figure out ways that are going to help enable you to meet these preconditioned requirements. So that's one example.

Another example: let's say you noticed that the past few weeks your mood hasn't been great, and upon introspecting, you realize that it has to do with your reaching for your phone immediately after waking up.

And that puts you in not the best mood for the rest of the day. Maybe instead of that, you realize, OK, instead of reaching for my phone right away, I need to first drink, my full glass of water and or do a little meditation.

So the precondition for reaching for your phone is that you drink your full glass of water and/or you do some mindfulness because again, it's easy to do the thing that is easier for you and forget about doing the things that you need to do.

So this is why setting this precondition will help you achieve your goals, but also not prevent you from doing the thing that is easy that you want to do that is the treat, so to speak.

All right. And let's give you the third example:

So imagine you are making tasty treats and it is something that you enjoy having, and it's wonderful. For me, that's my banana nut muffins. So let's say that you want to have that. But immediately after having that, you kind of feel a little bit too relaxed in that you might not get to your workout.

Or maybe after you having your treat, you decide to lounge a little bit or lay on the couch or watch TV. So that's fine, but it might not be aligned with your goals.

And so instead of preventing yourself from having your treat and then just kind of spiraling out of control, so to speak, what you can do is precondition training, so you instead have your workout first, you do maybe 30 minutes of a fun workout, whatever you find fun and then you have your treat because that way you got in your workout and you're probably less inclined then to spiral out of control and not get to your workout later.

For example, if you were to say, I'm just going to have my treat and then I'll do my workout, chances are you probably won't do your workout. So that might be something where you can say alright: instead, precondition training tells me that I will first do 30 minutes of movement that I like, and then I will have my treat.

And the reason I call it precondition training is that because, you know, sometimes it takes a little while to get into the swing of things. And so maybe instead of thinking about it after a certain while from just being able to do this as often as you can, you start putting the parameters in place and setting those systems up for success so that you don't even have to think twice. And it no longer might be a precondition for you. It's just what you do automatically, right? Like the first thing you do now when you wake up is you do some movement or you go for that walk.

You don't necessarily need to think, OK first A and then B.

But in the beginning, definitely by all means, find a way that is going to set yourself up for success and still allow you to do the things that you want to do.

Because again, you've checked off the boxes that are going to get you closer to your goals each and every day. And sometimes you might realize, well, yes, you decide to have your treat after your workout, but maybe at the end of your workout, you no longer want to have that treat.

And that's fine, right? You don't have to necessarily then say, Oh, well, because it's a pre condition exercise that that's what I have to do right after. So that is just something that you can keep in mind. And again, you do you you steer your own ship.

You are the captain of your own ship, so steer it well. And that's really it. I'm curious to hear from you. Do you find that willpower is something that can easily be depleted or do you have infinite amounts of it?

So let me know what you think, and if there are any other ways of setting yourself up for success, feel free to share that with the IgnyteFit Fam because everyone can benefit from some nice positive exchanges where we talk about health and fitness and longevity.

All right, that's it for me today. Thank you so much for watching, and I will see you in the next IgnyteFit! Bye for now, everyone.

Let's ignyte our fitness together!