Welcome to part two of the Constructs of Adherence series. A mind boggling, heart thumping, edge of your seat adventure of.......two blogs. Now that I've gotten you all riled up and ready to learn, let's dive in, shall we?
Before we continue, I do recommend that you go back to Part 1 and read Constructs of Adherence to set the table for you (because we're mainly talking about nutrition and training....see what I did there? Set the table? Nevermind).
Your goals are written down, your game plan is set, and motivation and inspiration are still blowing a gale force wind into your sails. You are unstoppable.....until those winds die down. You see, motivation is effective but extremely exhaustive, and unless you have a motor attached to your ship fueled by "willpower", you will get stuck. Willpower is the source you draw from when the going gets tough. It keeps you from going under. It brings you back to the surface when you want to give up. If we think about it, nutrition and training should be easy if all we have to focus our willpower fuel sources on is nutrition and training. But other things take your willpower away, as well. Family. Work. Friends. Pets. Willpower is not an infinite source. Willpower is finite. It can bring you back to the surface after a bad day, but it needs to be buoyed by discipline. Discipline is remembering your game plan when you want to binge eat a box of Captain Crunch cereal (with berries). Discipline is getting your training session in even though it took all of your energy just to make it through the work day. Discipline fills in those gaps when willpower starts to wane. Discipline brings you to the ultimate goal of nutrition and training. Habit.
Don't do someone else's workout. Your body is going to function differently than your friends, spouse, etc. This is not an excuse to do less work, but we all know someone who has over done it to keep up with a cookie cutter program (or friend) and they burn out before the month is over. Get a program regime that is tailored to you. Your age, experience, diet, sleep habits, and stress all play a role as far as how much work you can do in a given week.
When your nutrition plan becomes a habit your chances of success skyrocket. The less energy needed to adhere to your program, the easier it is to make it your daily routine. The likelihood of sticking to your new habits after you take a break from your diet is also much more promising. So keep in mind that there is a pot of gold at the end of your adherence rainbow. It may take 4-6 weeks to get there, but the reward is worth it.
Ah, passion. A deep affection for the process. People who are passionate about their craft have developed the habits and found something deeply special in those habits. For people passionate about nutrition love making their food, love the structure of their eating habits, and love how their eating habits make them feel. BUT! An important but. Passion, especially for nutrition, is not for everyone. It's a feeling, and all grown ups know, you can't tell people how to feel or promise someone they will feel this passion. All you need to know is that you can't reach passion without habit, and don't confuse passion for inspiration or motivation. Passion happens with practice.
The short story is adherence takes work. Consistent work. And it never ends in a few weeks or months. Wherever you are in your journey apply these 6 steps and see where it takes you.