What does that mean? Everything that you do throughout your day must be ON PURPOSE. If you eat somewhere "just because" and it was not intended for -re-do. If you let someone else choose where you'll dine out- re-do. If you can't make up your mind instantly about what is BEST for you, re-do. You must set intentional action, make a plan. NOT an exhaustive plan - but know your options, know your preferences and know your absolute WILL NOT DO.
1. Plan Your Day
Just as you check your calendar to see an overview of your day - who you must call and meet with, you can schedule in and plan for fitness and healthy eating. Each morning take 5 minutes to look for open slots of time within your day to dedicate to health and fitness. Make up your mind at the beginning of your day for a 30 minute run at lunch, 30 sit ups before work, or an after work run. If it helps to set it in stone by adding it to your calendar- do it.
2. Prep For Excuses
Self sabotage is the biggest killer of all goals and dreams. It is the fuel by procrastination, negativity and excuses. Getting stronger physically will require you to be stronger mentally starting with Will Power. Phase out annoying excuses by preparing for them ahead of time. You know that they are coming, the little devil on your shoulder cannot wait to derail you. So build your line of defense against negative self talk and excuses. Example- If you know that you will bail on an after work run at the slightest sign of cold weather- pack your hoodie and sweats. If you know that you will cave on eating healthy at the first sign of a co-workers birthday celebration, build an alliance with a friend who can point out your fall to temptations. Get help to stay accountable. Building up will power within yourself takes practice- just like any other discipline including martial arts and sports- practice gives you agility even against your toughest enemy to beat...yourself. Know that your excuses and negative thoughts are coming, know your weak points, acknowledge them and move beyond them by being prepped ahead of time.
3. Use Mental Cues
The human brain responds to signals or cues throughout your entire day. Hear a ding*- check your Facebook, see a red signal light- hit the brakes, smell breakfast- become hungry. Set up your own daily mental cues to help signal you for healthy behaviors and habits. Need to drink more water? Keep your favorite water bottle in front of you all day to serve as a reminder. Want to run tonight? Set your running shoes in front of your front door where you can see them. Want to exercise first thing in the morning? Sleep in your gym clothes and wake up ready for action. A helpful tip to avoid the kids foods in the fridge: put those foods in colored containers so that they are out of sight out of mind. Just like with #2 Prepping For Excuses, little preparations go a long way in combating your own tendencies.
4. Write Down Healthy TO-DOs
The power of the pen should never be underestimated. There have long been studies that show the correlation of writing things down and actually getting them done or at least started. When you write things down with a specific time frame, something magical happens- your brain starts to really consider right then and there whether or not you will follow through. It starts to create other mental processes around HOW to actualize the task. For example- You may casually have in your mind to "run after work" and head into the day with not another second of thought about it, the idea only to be dealt with later in the day. BUT if you actually sit down and write down the task "run after work" - for a split second your mind will start to consider the fact that immediately after work you must take the kids to soccer practice. This small yet important moment will be the deciding factor of how to follow through. Write your goal down with as much specificity as possible so that you may realign, rethink or reconsider a surefire way to complete it.