Category Archives for "Motivation"

18th July 2019

The Concept Of Training

People train to be fit for a multitude of reasons.  You may want to shed some pounds to be more healthy or to look good in your swimming costume for your summer holidays.  Equally you may be looking to PB in a given sport or achieve an outstanding goal.  The range of reasons and benefits to a well constructed fitness regime are endless.

Understanding how to be a good trainer is in itself a skill few people actually master.  Simply doing 3 sets of 10 of something and following a set programme will get you to a certain level, but will it tick boxes like balance, co-ordination or increase your aerobic threshold.  Similarly, it’s common to find endurance athletes trying to get better by doing mile after mile rather than stepping back and considering how an effective strength and conditioning programme might enable them to become more efficient.

I suppose it depends on our concept of health and what that means and how that effects the way we train.  Will running 100 mile races make us more healthy in our later years? Does training to the mirror and having a nice body mean that we can do functional tasks, which the body evolved to do, better?

For fitness you need strength, power, flexibility, balance and agility.  Focusing on one element won’t benefit you in terms of general health.  Basic things like economy of movement, flexibility, lifting and carrying should all be areas under consideration.

Moving back to the point of training.  Taking the above in to consideration will enable you to have an intelligent approach to training which invariably mean better nutrition, sleep and concentration.  At this point we can look at the final piece of the jigsaw the psychological aspect of training.  Why can two people use the same approach and have dramatically different results? Once you understand how to train well you then need to understand how to manage the workload, when to push and when to back off.  Have confidence in your approach and your ability.

They’re many aspects to an effective training routine but if we take a step back and ask ourselves if we are hitting our areas of fitness and is our approach correct and pragmatic you should be closer to achieving your goals.

Can We Help You Master The 4 Pillars Of Health?

Exercise, Nutrition, Mindset and Relaxation.

Mindful Eating

What Does “Mindful Eating” Really Mean?

The term “mindful eating” seems to be tossed around a lot in connection with losing weight.

Mindfulness is a Buddhist meditation practice that involves bringing all your awareness to the here and now, to the sensations in our bodies and our breathing, for example, rather than letting much of our attention slip away in contemplation of the past and future or of thoughts and images that are not real. The assumption is that when we act with full awareness, our actions are more likely to achieve what we intend, and that when we feel with full awareness, we are more likely to feel fulfilled.

Many people eat semiconsciously, on autopilot, chewing and swallowing food without really tasting it or focusing attention on the next bite before they have enjoyed the present one. Others talk, read, or watch television while they eat, directing their attention incompletely to their food.

One consequence of this type of unmindful eating is overeating and, of course, the end result of that is being overweight or obese.

Have you ever mindlessly shoveled in quantities of popcorn or chips while watching a movie or staring at a television screen? Another consequence of unmindful eating is missing the full sensory pleasure of food and enjoyment of meals.

A famous exercise in mindfulness training is putting a raisin in your mouth to see how long you can keep it there without chewing and swallowing it, while focusing all your attention on its taste and texture. Try it for some firsthand mindfulness practice.

Have you noticed that when food is really good, conversation at the table is reduced to a minimum as people concentrate on the enjoyment of the moment?  As a result, they are likely to eat less and enjoy their meal more.Breaking mindless habits of eating requires motivation and practice.  When food is served to you, take a moment to fully appreciate its appearance and aroma before starting to eat. When you first taste it, try to give it your full attention.

Eating mindfully means slowing down, expressing gratitude for the food we are eating, being satisfied with food, and paying attention to why we eat. Try rating your level of hunger, before, during and asfter the meal.  This will help to regulate how much food you eat.  If you get into the habit of mindful eating it will help steer you away from unhealthy relationships with food and that it heightens the pleasure of the experience.


  1. Prepare everyone’s favourite healthy snacks.  (chopped apples, fruit,
  2. Set the table for the family or friends
  3. when everyone is seated, explain that you will all be eating mindfully
  4. Ask everyone to close their eyes
  5. Ask everyone to notice their level of hunger for example
  6. Observe where that feeling of hunger is coming from
  7. rate how hungry you are btween 1-10
  8. Bring their food plates to the table
  9. Ask guests to imagine that when they open their eyes, they are looking at food for the first time!
  10.  Ask guests to look at their food and imagine they have never seen it
  11. Note the shape and colour with curiosity
  12. lift up food and hold it, how does it feel
  13. Smeel it and note the aroma.  Is it earthy, sweet, spicy, sour or fragrant.  is the aroma strong, or faint
  14. Notice what’s happeining inside your mouth in anticipation of eating
  15. Is it dificult to resist eating it
  16. bring it towards your mouth, does your tongue offer the food a place to sit
  17. place the food in your mouth, rest it on your tongue, but don’t chew it for a moment
  18. At last, slowly begin to chew your food, savouring it’s flavour
  19. Notice the texture and taste, observe the flavours
  20. Is it sweet, sours, salty or bitter?  Is it crunchy or smooth, or creamy
  21. How does it sound.
  22. Swallow your food and observe what happens as it moves down into your stomach
  23. Are you left with an aftertaste?
  24. Now after swallowing, rate your hunger from 1-10
  25. remember to eat all of your food slowly!
  26. Take a moment to appreciate all the food you have eaten, where it came from, how the food miraculously gets absorbed by the body for growth and energy
18th October 2018

The Santa Diet

[widgets_on_pages id=”” small=”1″ medium=”1″ large=”1″ wide=”1″]While the so-called “Santa Diet” (putting on 10 pounds over the Christmas period) has been shown to be somewhat exaggerated, scientific studies do suggest that on average 3.5 pounds is what most of us gain between Christmas and New Year.

While this may not sound like a lot, for most of us only half this weight is ever lost, meaning a decade of Christmases can have a huge impact on your waistline.

These are the 5 Big Things that cause weight gain at Christmas

  •  Stress:

Secret Santa gifts, the last minute rush for the must-have kiddie toy, or simply the pressure of clearing your workload

before the New Year all add to the extra stress most of us feel around the holiday period. Sadly when it comes to coping with

stress, the first thing many of us reach for is a snack. Whether it’s your favourite chocolate bar, fast food burger, packet of

crisps or gooey cake, overeating and stress seem to come hand in hand over the holiday period. This unhealthy friendship is

only made worse by the release of stress hormone Cortisol that promotes weight gain – especially belly fat.

  • Broken Routines:

    When it comes to living a healthy lifestyle, getting into positive routines helps. Gym Monday, Wednesday, Friday, cooking for the week on Sunday, preparing healthy snacks first thing on Monday and taking time out to meditate can all be achieved if we stay in routine, even when they have to be fitted around the school run, morning meetings, afternoon clubs and late night events. So why does routine seem to fly out of the window the moment the first Advent Calendar is opened?

    Holiday visits, changes in office routines, Christmas parties at work, at school, with friends, with family, with the dog walking club, you name it, means something has to give and too often it’s the healthy routines.

  • Emotional Associations:

    So you have been good and spent December saying no to the box of chocolate that has done more loops of the office than the Mexican wave during the Olympics, but you simply can’t say no to Granny’s home made mince pies? Don’t worry; you are not alone. One of the toughest challenges most December dieters face is the emotional ties they have to certain foods, whether it’s Granny’s mince pies, Dad’s supersized Sunday roast or the box of special chocs you always share with loved ones while watching a Christmas movie.

  • Social pressure:
    Christmas is seen as a time to relax, kick back and enjoy all the things we have been so diligently staying away from the rest of the year. As a result there is often a lot of associated guilt, which is elevated if everyone is seen to be joining in. As a result, studies have shown we tend to eat more than the average, with office workers often matching the sugary intake of their colleagues fuelling the constant psychological cue to overeat.
  • The New Year Cop-out:

    How many of us have used the excuse, “I’ll hit the gym in the New Year”? According to reports this is one of the most popular resolutions every year, allowing us to stuff our face with our favourite sweets, biscuits, chocolates and cakes. Sadly while it will be top of the resolution list for many of us before Big Ben chimes in the New Year, far fewer will see it through.

The Podfit 12 Tips of Christmas

The Christmas season is fast approaching! Now Christmas can be a stressful time with all the planning, preparation and rushing around. At some points you may find yourself wondering if it is all worth it! Throughout this period the temptation to indulge and risk of deviating from your fitness routine is high! So this article is here to give you 12 helpful tips to help keep you on track whilst still being able to enjoy the celebrations.

1. Create a Christmas mantra

A  mantra is an affirmation to motivate and inspire you to be your best self. It is typically a positive phrase or statement that you use to affirm the way you want to live your life. Its purpose is to provide motivation and encouragement to you when you need to focus your mind to achieve a goal. You should create yourself a mantra which is personal and specific to you and your goals. You could even try to make this mantra festive and Christmas related. An example could be “I am going to gift myself with the body I want this Christmas”

2. Fail to plan, plan to fail

You should always plan in order to limit the decisions you have to make throughout the day and give you clarity and structure! This will help you stick to your diet and fitness routine and limit the risk of decision fatigue.

Firstly you should plan your meals. Planning your meals takes away the stress of having to figure out what you are going to eat for breakfast/lunch/dinner.

Planning for meals also allows you to incorporate healthy eating within what you can afford. It is important to take into account your lifestyle/schedule/commitment. If you are not willing or do not have have time to make an elaborate healthy dish, then do not plan for that dish and buy groceries for that dish if it is unlikely or unrealistic for you to have or make that dish.

For example, I know that I have a busy life and that I do not always have time to make breakfast/lunch/dinner so I try to plan meals that are healthy and easy to make, but also affordable, durable, and that will last a certain amount of time, and and I only buy groceries that fit into this plan.

Secondly you should plan your exercise. Your should set clear routines and goals when exercising. You should know at the start of the week what exercise you intend to do. Whether this be go for a run, swim, attend the gym etc. This can then be even more specific as you should never walk into the gym and not know what you are going to do or go for a run without a distance or time in mind. You will rarely exercise effectively if you don’t plan your workout or set goals for your session.

3. Don’t go places hungry

The truth is, we are not our ideal, best- thinking, balanced selves when we are hungry. We overestimate how much we need to eat (“eat with our eyes”), we overeat, we eat things we shouldn’t eat, we say things we don’t mean, etc. Our primal instinct and drive to eat takes over and nothing else really matters.

So it is good to not go places hungry, even if there will be food at the place you are going to. Generally, it takes time for food to arrive at the table, for people to decide what they want to eat, for hosts to have things ready to roll, for social and interpersonal activities to take place, etc. which means that going hungry to any place makes you more likely to be irritable and on a one-track mind to get your physiological needs met. Going to places hungry also doesn’t support the best decision-making so it’s good practice to eat something before you go.

4. Decide on indulgences beforehand

Throughout the Christmas period it is easy to over indulge. While this can be avoided with the will of steel, sometimes we will decide to give our wills of steel a day (or two? Or more?) off.

When this happens or when you decide to eat as you should not be eating, be selective in what you are eating and when you are eating it. A treat does not hurt every now and then, but it is a waste to eat a sweet or food item that we do not really care for just because we can.

If you are going to cheat, cheat sparingly and selectively.  Do not waste your cheating opportunities on stuff that you do not really want to eat and are only eating because you are craving something sweet/salty/etc. or because it happens to be around.

5. Be decisive

Indecision can be exhausting so decisiveness conserves both our physical and our emotional energy. It helps us to reduce procrastination, become more productive and organised, and gives us a greater peace of mind by eliminating anxiety and improving our confidence. When setting goals and making food choices your should be decisive and make a firm decision, then stick to this decision. You will gain so much more control over your life and your confidence will dramatically increase from simply being decisive.

6. Drink lots of water

Water is healthy for you and necessary for our bodies to survive. Our bodies are 50- 70% water and the rest blood. You can survive up to eight weeks without food as long as you have water. I do not recommend trying this out unless your life is such that this is unavoidable but rather include this to highlight the importance of water. For many cultures, water is life or is associated with life.

You should be drinking water throughout the day, whenever you are hungry, whenever you are bored, whenever you remember, and before meals. In fact, you should be drinking water right now. Your body needs an average of 8-10 cups of water to replenish the water that our bodies lose each day a n d it takes more water to replenish our water stores when we are involved in activities, heat, etc. It also takes time for your body to absorb the water that you take in and your body cannot take in all the water that it needs in one sitting.

7. Lower expectations

Expecting too much of yourself is a sure-fire way to increase stress levels. Ask yourself what you think you should or must be doing. Sometimes the expectations we have aren’t helpful, especially if we feel others might judge us.  SO throughout this busy time don’t try and cram in too much. Taking a break will give you time to recharge your batteries before the New Year starts.

8. Remember what Christmas is about

Among the Christmas panic and stress you should always keep in mind what Christmas is all about. Christmas is about having fun, celebrating the year gone by and spending time with the people you love. Try to enjoy yourself and relax,  stay positive and think about what makes Christmas great.

9. Routine is key

The word routine can often be frown upon and seen as being restrictive and boring. However routines can be fun and having one can lead to many health benefits. With the Christmas period being hectic and stressful a routine will be especially beneficial. A solid routine can result in:

  • Better stress levels lead to improved mental health, more time to relax and less anxiety. A lack of healthy stress management techniques can put you at greater risk for heart disease and negatively impact your overall health.
  • Better sleep will leave you refreshed. Your daily routine influences your quality of rest. Your sleep scehdule and bedtime habits affect your mental sharpness, performance, emotional well-being and energy level. It’s best if you can maintain a consistent time for waking and going to bed.
  • Better health is a result of just a little extra planning. Set the alarm a little earlier and you’ll have time to exercise and eat breakfast, fuelling your body for the day. Even a quick (and healthy) breakfast will get you energised. Whether you like to just go for a run or go to the gym for a bigger workout, it’s important make time for exercise.

10. Learn to say no

This one can be a hard one, especially around the holidays, festive days, celebratory days, or any days with food outside of your healthy eating plan, but the truth is that in order to lose weight and to maintain weight loss, you will have to say “no” to a lot of things that you want to say “yes” to.

The food will look great, smell great, and everyone around you will look happy as they eat the food that you too would like to be eating. It takes strength and willpower, but you have to implement the “no” and the self-control if you want to lose weight and maintain weight loss.

11. Get up and make movement your “modus operandi”

You may feel like throughout the Christmas period that you do not have time to exercise and that there is simply too much else to do. However it is essential to exercise, even if it is simply taking the stairs instead of the lift in the shops, as our bodies were made to be in motion and we suffer mental, physical, and spiritual effects when we are not moving sufficiently and when we are not getting enough activity in our daily lives. There are numerous articles and research that has been done highlighting the detrimental health.

So get moving and find and way that works for you to track it. It can be with a pedometer, an activity log, a daily break checklist, or a hybrid of methods but you’ll want to hold yourself accountable and want to see that activity “add up.” It also helps with consistency and routine in making movement part of your “modus operandi.”

12. Reduce sugars in your diet

Now throughout the Christmas period there is so much more sugary foods which are put right in front of you, whether this be a advent calendar, box of celebrations or a bowl of Christmas pudding. A high sugar diet can lead to health conditions such as:

  • Obesity and metabolic syndrome
  • Heart disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure and cholesterol
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
  • Dental plaque and cavities

Reducing the amount of sugar in the diet can help reduce the risks for these conditions. Replacing sugary foods with healthful ones can help a person get all of their essential vitamins and minerals. It may also help a person lose weight. To help you do this you should try:

  • Reading food labels
  • Avoid simple carbs such as white rice and white pasta
  • Avoid artificial sugars and sweeteners
  • Do not drink sugar (fizzy drinks etc)
  • Plan your meals
  • Focus and unprocessed whole foods

So there you have it! Try use these tips to help you get through the Christmas period and help you stick to your goals. Merry Christmas from all of us here at Podfit!!!

12th October 2018

5 Ways You Can Afford A Personal Trainer On A Budget…..And Save Money

Truth be told, I believe everyone can afford a Personal Trainer. I have come to this realisation over the last 10 years while changing people’s lives. I have personal trained executives, stay at home mum’s, corporate career women, estate agents, CEO’s…if there was a need, people would find a way. I know I did. When I was striving to solve my back pain, I decided it was time for me to hire a personal trainer too. Then again, then this year, after hip surgery, I hired one of my team. I needed an expert to keep me on track and to make sure I was not skipping on form and painful rehabilitation sessions.

The relationship between accountability and success is irrefutable. Virtually all highly successful people embrace a high degree of accountability. It gives them the leverage they need to take action and create results.

Hal Elrod, The Miracle Morning

Make Savings in other areas for your new body.

Your health is the most important part of your life. Make sure you have got your priorities right.

If you don’t look after the body you’ve got, where are you going to live?

Think about what is more important. The right body, and education to learn the best training and nutrition for your body, or getting your nails done again this week? The savings can add up. Take-out food goes against your health and fitness goals anyway so why bother? Are there any other habits you can sacrifice to help you save toward your very own personal trainer? Alcohol is another huge saving and goes against your health and fitness goals. I cant begin to explain the positive effect cutting alcohol will have on your life in addition to the monetary savings. Take a look at the list of most harmful drugs

Cut out take aways, alcohol and beauty treats and you will have money left over, after your investment to get into the best shape of your life.

Start small

You can begin with 45 min sessions 2 – 3 times per week over 90 days. In 90 days you will surely know if the personal trainer is a good one or not. You should have seen some type of transformation. Loose clothes, a lower number on the scale, more energy, greater stamina and a desire to live healthier. This will cost you about £330 per month for 3 months.

Finance your personal training.

This is where you would take your overall amount like £1,500 for a 3 month period and finance it over 6 – 12 months. Your payments can be as low as £130/month. I know of plenty of gyms that are now charging £150/month for large boot camp or group training where as you could get 1 on 1 instruction for the same price.

Ask family and friends for personal training Christmas and birthday presents. You can even create a gift list. Quality Personal Training studios will have gift vouchers available.

Generate referrals.

Podfit’s best marketing efforts and energy always come from satisfied clients or patrons. In fact, with our business we offer our clients a reduced session rate and free sessions if they refer a new paying client to us. If you like the service, why not tell people about it and save money? Take advantage of Referrals Month. Get double rewards and if you refer us 5 paying clients we will give you your personal training for FREE.

Train with a partner.

Training with a partner makes Personal Training even more affordable and it adds some extra accountability and its a lot of fun.

Have you ever tried a personal trainer?

If you have, have you had an award winning personal trainer, who makes your goals, their goals and makes sure they add layer upon layer of accountability, mindset motivation and education so that when you leave, you have not only achieved your fitness goals, you have been educated to keep doing it on your own, or your money back, guaranteed?

This is the ultimate accountability. So right now, change your mindset from “how could I ever afford a personal trainer?” to:

What is changing your body worth to you?

And what has it already cost you?

A new gym membership that you didn’t make use of, Weight loss clinics, Local boot camps, Pre-prepared food to your door, DVD workout program, Slimming belt Liposuction, Measuring food on a scale, Weight loss supplements, The latest fitness app, Invasive surgery?

It was worth whatever you paid above, wasn’t it?

Think about the knowledge you learn in terms of exercise form, technique and program design. Of course you learn a lot about food too. Is paying for personalised knowledge worth money? Of course it is.

After all, what’s the alternative?

“If you don’t change the direction you are going, then you’re likely to end up where you’re heading…”

The bottom line–when you spend your money try asking yourself:

” How is this item or service going to benefit me now and in the future”?

12th October 2018


Personal Trainer York

Lets set some SMART goals!

Goal setting is a very important tool to increase your motivation. Your trainer should have already discussed your goals you and you should both have a target to strive for. However this can be also applied to your life outside the studio whether these goals are health and fitness related or not!

No matter how big or small your goal-whether it’s losing 5 or 50 pounds, walking a mile or running your first marathon-making change requires planning and SMART goal setting.

Follow these guidelines to setting SMART goals and you will be surprised at what you can do:

  1. Specific: Your goal should be clear and easy to understand.
    • A common goal, “get healthy,” is too general. There are so many ways to get healthy. How do you want to do it? Is it losing weight? Start exercising? Stop smoking? Break it down and it will be easier to manage.
    • Let’s pick weight loss and make a SMART goal out of it together. For example, “I will lose weight.”
  1. Measurable: A goal to “lose weight” is not enough. How will you track your progress and how you will know when you have reached your goal? Making your goal measurable means adding a number.
  1. Attainable. Before you can add a number, you have to know how high or low you want to go. It’s good to ‘shoot for the stars’, but don’t be too extreme. Likewise, a goal that is too easy is also not very motivating. Only you know your limits.
    • Let’s take our goal above. What percentage is attainable for you? Research suggests that a 5-10% weight loss is attainable for most overweight people.
    • A measurable, attainable goal could be, “I will lose 7% of my body weight.”
  1. Relevant. Set goals that are important to where you are in your life right now. Don’t set a goal that someone else is pressuring you to attain-that isn’t very motivating.
    • Examine our goal so far. Does it seem relevant to you? If so, let’s keep going. If you are not concerned about weight loss or this is not a good time in your life to focus on that, choose something that IS motivating to you.
  1. Time-bound. Include an end-point. Knowing that you have a deadline motivates you to get started.
    • Since healthy weight loss is about 1-2 pounds per week, set your deadline accordingly. For our example we can use 3 months. “I will lose 7% of my body weight in 3 months.”
12th October 2018

How to Prevent Decision Fatigue When You Are Trying To Lose Weight

Personal Trainer York

Why do we make unhealthy choices that prevent us from losing weight — even when we know we should do better?

If you ask most people, they will say that poor food and drink choices are a result of a “lack of willpower.”

In fact, you may be surprised just how much small daily decisions impact the willpower you have for important choices. And most importantly, it turns out there are simple choices you can make that will help you master your willpower and make better decisions on a more consistent basis.

About 40% of the decisions we make are made on autopilot. So the first thing to do is to retrain the brain to make automatically smart choices. This takes time and practice and I will discuss this in another article.

Why Some Criminals Don’t Get a Fair Hearing

So this might seem a little off topic, but It is fundamental to you uderstanding decison fatigues. In a research study published by the National Academy of Sciences, psychologists examined the factors that impact whether or not a judge approves a criminal for parole.

The researchers examined 1000 judicial rulings over a 10-month period. All of the rulings were made by a parole board judge, who was determining whether or not to allow the criminal to be released from prison on parole.

Now, you might assume that the judges were influenced by factors like the type of crime committed or the particular laws that were broken.

But the researchers found exactly the opposite. The choices made by judges are impacted by all types of things that shouldn’t have an effect in the courtroom. The most notable factor was the time of day!

What the researchers found was that at the start of the day, a judge was likely to give a favorable ruling about 65 percent of the time. However, as the morning wore on and the judge became drained from making more and more decisions, the likelihood of a criminal getting a favorable ruling steadily dropped to zero.

After taking a lunch break, however, the judge would return to the courtroom refreshed and the likelihood of a favorable ruling would immediately jump back up to 65 percent. And then, as the hours moved on, the percentage of favorable rulings would fall back down to zero by the end of the day.

This trend held true for more than 1,100 cases. It didn’t matter what the crime was — murder, rape, theft, embezzlement — a criminal was much more likely to get a favorable response if their parole hearing was scheduled in the morning (or immediately after a food break) than if it was scheduled near the end of a long session.

What’s Going on Here?

As it turns out, your willpower is like a muscle. And similar to the muscles in your body, willpower can get tired when it is used repeatedly. Every time you make a decision, it’s like doing another rep in the gym. And similar to how your muscles get tired at the end of a workout, the strength of your willpower fades as you make more decisions.

This phenomenon is known as decision fatigue. When the judge on a parole board experiences decision fatigue, they deny more parole requests.

This makes sense. When your willpower is fading and your brain is tired of making decisions, it’s easier just to say no and keep everyone locked up than it is to debate whether or not someone is trustworthy enough to leave prison. At the beginning of the day, a judge will give each case a fair shot. But as their energy starts to fade? Deny, deny, deny.

Do You Suffer From Decision Fatigue?

Decision fatigue happens every day in your life as well. If you have a particularly decision-heavy day at work, then you come home feeling drained. You might want to go to the gym and workout, but your brain would rather default to the easy decision: sit on the couch. That’s decision fatigue.

The same thing is true if you find it hard to muster up the willpower at night to cook a healthy meal for dinner. You will come home, open the wine and order a takeaway. Tha’t not going to help you lose weight. That’s decision fatigue.

And while decision fatigue is something that we all deal with, there are a few ways that you can organize your life and design your day to master your willpower.

5 Ways to Overcome Decision Fatigue and Boost Willpower

1. Plan daily decisions the night before.

There will always be decisions that pop up each day that you can’t plan for. That’s fine. It’s just part of life.

But for most of us, the decisions that drain us are the ones that we make over and over and over again on a daily bais. Wasting precious willpower on these decisions — which could be automated or planned in advance — is one reason why many people feel so drained at the end of the day.

These are examples of daily decisions

What am I going to wear to work? What should I eat for breakfast? Where shall I get my lunch from? What groceries shall I buy? Shall I exercise today? Should I weigh myself tomorrow? And so on.

All of those examples above, can be decided in 3 minutes or less the night before, which means you won’t be wasting your willpower on those choices the next day and you are much more likely to lose weight if you reduce the decision making process. Taking time to plan out, simplify, and design the repeated daily decisions will give you more mental space to make the important choices each day.

2. Do the most important thing first.

If there was the most important court case in the world, when would you want the judge to hear it?

Based on the research above, first thing in the morning. You’d want their best attention, energy, and focus to go toward the decisions that were most important.

The same thing goes for your work and life. What’s the most important thing for you right now?

Is it getting in shape? Is it writing that book you have inside of you? Is it learning to eliminate stress and relax? That’s why I train first thing in the morning, usually around 6am, when ever I can. I make exercise my modus operandi and I don’t make that choice when I get up. It’s pre determined in my long term planning and entered into my diary.

Whatever it is for you, put your best energy toward it. If you have to wake up 30 minutes earlier, then do that. I’m a huge fan of getting up early.

3. Stop making decisions. Start making commitments.

I think advice like, “you just need to decide to do it” gets dished around too much.

Yes, of course you need to decide to do the things that are important to you, but more than that you need to schedule them into your life.

We all have things that we say are important to us.

“I really want to feel fitter.”

“I really want to lose 40 pounds.”

“I really want to get started on XYZ.”

Unfortunately, most of us simply hope that we’ll have the willpower and motivation to make the right decisions each day.

Rather than hoping that I’ll make the right choice each day, I’ve found much more success by scheduling the things that are important to me.

For example, I scedule in gym sessions on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6am. I have a 2 week plan of the food I’m going to eat and If I forget that food, I have a back up plan of 2 shops I will get my lunch from when I am at work, to reduce the decion making process on things that I can control. As a business owner, the buck stops at me and I have enough decisions to make in my day. I’m sure you do too.

If you sit back and hope that you’ll be able to make the right decisions each day, then you will certainly fall victim to decision fatigue and a lack of willpower.

4. If you have to make good decisions later in the day, then eat something first.

It’s no coincidence that the judges became better decision makers after eating. Now, if you cram french fries into your veins every day, then I doubt that you’ll enjoy the same results. But taking a break to feed your brain is a wonderful way to boost willpower.

This is especially important because although it’s great to do the most important thing first, it’s not always possible to organise your day like that.

When you want to get better decisions from your mind, put better food into your body.

5. Simplify.

Whether you are trying to start eating a healthy diet, the biggest frustration for most people is the feeling that you need to use willpower on an hourly basis.

Find ways to simplify your life. If something isn’t important to you, eliminate it. Making decisions about unimportant things, even if you have the time to do so, isn’t a benign task. It’s pulling precious energy and willpower from the things that matter.

Willpower is the one area of life where you can improve your output by reducing the number of inputs.

The Bottom Line

Willpower isn’t something you have or something you lack. It rises and falls. And while it’s impossible to maximise your willpower for every moment of every day, it is possible to make a few changes to your day and your routine so that you can get the most of your decisions and make consistent progress on the things that are important to you.