If you have been at Lifelong Fitness, I can almost guarantee you that you have heard the phrase, “nutrition is eighty percent of your success”.  The good news is that that statement is 100% true.  The bad news is also that this statement is 100% true.  As you may well be aware, nutrition is the hardest part of any lifestyle change and we are aware of this fact.  However it can also be a fun journey if you take the time to make it such.  I am writing this foreword with the intent of clarifying what characteristics will be necessary for you to succeed.  I am excited for your success and look forward to hearing about your lifelong change.

#1:  Start from the END

This principle is so important it is at number #1 for a reason.  I want you envision EXACTELY what kind of nutritional lifestyle you want to live.  Be very specific.  I want you to then write it down.  You can even get descriptive pictures to go along with it if possible because it will help you visualize your end destination.  The net effect of this exercise is this: you are painting a very vivid picture in your mind of what you want to achieve and allowing your subconscious brain to take note of this.  Once this happens, your subconscious brain will help you in your thought patterns and help you stay within a positive state of mind.  Please do not take this lightly as it has the power to change your habits.

#2:  Recognize that Lifestyle Change takes hard work and consistency

The bottom line is that there are no shortcuts.  What we are promoting here at Lifelong Fitness is lifestyle change, and lifestyle change can be a daunting task for some.  My advice is to meet your challenges face to face and never back down.  For example if you have been accustomed to eating just the way you like with little to no discipline, you will find it hard in becoming more regimented and healthy.  Please know that this is something that you should accept and embrace from day 1.  Your trainer is here to help you with any and all of your challenges, but at the end of the day it is YOUR responsibility to eat well and be healthy.   You should take solace in the fact that it does get easier.  As with any habit, it might be hard at first, but after a while it will become second nature to you.

#3:  Stay Positive

Many clients begin their sessions with me with a chip on their shoulder and a preconceived notion of “how hard this is going to be”.  My advice is to remember step #1 and stay positive no matter what.  If you are a pessimist you will find this challenging.  If you are sneering right now, I guarantee this will be a challenge!  J Here is an exercise that I want you to do for the next 3 weeks for your new lifestyle change.

A) Take note of every time you say something negative about your fitness or nutrition.  I would invite you to take this one step further and do it in general.  When I say take note, I really mean it…take physical notes.  You will be amazed at how many negative and pessimistic things come out of your mouth.  This is important because it will help start the process of changing your vocabulary.  Your vocabulary is extremely important because it influences your subconscious mind and your subconscious mind is responsible for changing your habits.

B) Every time you slip and make a negative comment, do just the opposite and write down a positive comment.  Sounds cheesy I know, but please do it…you will thank me later.

#4: Enlist the support of your family and/or peers

The more support you can garner the better…trust me!  I have seen people fail because a spouse is not on board with support.  I have seen other fail because their friends are constantly ridiculing them (albeit in a friendly manner) about their new lifestyle.  Avoid this sabotage by informing your friends and family about your new lifestyle change.

#5 Drop the EXCUSES!

I want you to go and buy a book right now.  It is entitled Excuses Begone, by Wayne W. Dyer.  This book will change your life and aid you in your quest to change your nutritional lifestyle.  Excuses are nothing more than an option out of the lifestyle you would like to have.  Time is always going to be short.  Your kids will always be demanding.  Your teenage son will always test your patience and increase your desire for comfort foods.  This is where steps 1 & 2 come in real handy.  I am going to be very bold in this next sentence so please bear with me.  If you are here to lose weight, get in better shape, learn how to eat better, or any other reason…you are here to learn how to STOP MAKING EXCUSES!  For they are what got you to where you are in the first place!  I would encourage you with every ounce of sincerity that I possess to take inventory of your excuses and then do away with them.  This may take some prioritizing and schedule re-arranging, but there is always a way to accomplish what you want.

#6 Keep it fun!

I can hear the sighs right now!  Yes, it can be fun!  A few of the key ways to keep it fun are as follows:

A)  Be Creative.  Switch up your nutrition often.

B) Be proactive.  Get on to the internet and get some healthy recipes.  Go to the book store and get a clean recipe book.  Join a healthy eating club.  Ask your trainer for recipes and have them write you a menu

C) Involve other people.  Enlist as many people in your cause as possible!  This will serve to give you much support and it provides valuable synergy in your mission.

#7 Be Consistent!

If you can never be consistent your will never succeed in the long term period.  I have seen many a client fail because they let their excuses get in the way.  Consistency is never obtained and results fly out the window.   Inconsistency as it pertains to nutrition is actually harder on your body, so make the decision now to be consistent.  If you fall down pick yourself up and do better the next time.  Consistency is a learned habit so take it one day at a time.

#8 Drop the “All-or-Nothing-Syndrome”

Here is a little dose of reality.  Just because you ate 2 cookies in the morning that added up to 300 calories does not justify and additional 5000 calories of junk food in the name of “well, I messed up so I might as well eat crappy for the rest of the day”.  Laughing aside I have heard this countless times and it is an absolute death-nail to progress.  Please do not fall for this load of nonsense.

#9 Know that we support you!

We are here to ensure your lifelong change, so please use us a resource!  I think you will find that we want your success more than your want your success until you catch the vision of lifestyle change.  You will only understand that last sentence after you have fully changed your lifestyle and we are here to help you along with that mission.

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