Many people are confused and frequently mistaken on what exactly are the necessary ingredients to achieve your fitness goals. While many believe that you must have natural athletic ability, many natural, or genetically-gifted, athletes never reach their full potential. Reaching your full potential, or, simply, "being the best you can be", has little to do with athletic ability, but, rather, has to do with your mind. In my estimation, roughly 70% of achieving your fitness goals is mental. Most athletes, from "weekend warrior" to the elite, will realize that some of their greatest physical achievements were accomplished when they absolutely did not think they would make it through the event. They will tell you that they felt like staying in bed, could not get off the couch, were ready to jump on the airplane and go home, etc. With this in mind, just exactly what are the necessary ingredients to achieve success.

There are many qualities and principles that can be important. However, there are two main qualities that seem to breed the others. They are Commitment and Willingness. Without these two, progress will be limited and, very often, halted. Commitment is absolutely crucial to recovery and/or  goal achievement. The first thing I discuss with a potential client is their past workout activities. Invariably, they relate that they "just could not stick with it". Those of us who use a gym year-round, notice the influx of people "committing to get fit" the first of January, only to be gone and never seen again by mid-February. Most people fail to understand that they did not get in the shape they are overnight, and it takes time to get back in shape. You must set aside time for your workout every day, except your rest day. View it as a very important appointment with yourself that cannot be broken, unless absolutely necessary. It is also helpful to make a note in your workout journal as to why you missed that day. Over time, you can judge Whether or not your reasons were credible or simply an excuse. Since 2000, I have missed no more than three in a year, throwing out Christmas Day, New Years Day, and one major and  two minor surgical procedures. Basically, you want to have your workouts become part of your normal day, just as you would set aside time for your shower or bath.

Willingness is, also, crucial to success. Clients often describe what they are willing to do and what they are not. I immediately respond that may limit their results. Most of the time, there is an underlying fear or past bad experience that sets that limit, even though it is based on perception rather than fact. For example, people often view themselves as clumsy and uncoordinated. The mere suggestion of stability training instills instant fear and impedes their willingness to participate. I worked with a client that had both knees replaced and really needed to improve her stability. A consultation with her physical therapist revealed that she absolutely was not going to do what she did not want to do. Despite that insight, I proceeded to introduce her to the Bosu, and revealed to her my intention to have her to do some dumbbell routines on top of the Bosu. Her response was not very positive (Oh Brother, is that an understatement!). Undaunted, I proceeded as planned, and very slowly I helped her accomplish that feat by performing dumbbell delt presses and biceps curls. Sometimes even a tiny seed of willingness flourishes. Finally, willingness suppresses arrogance and ignorance. Bodybuilders and naive athletes rarely realize the importance of stability training. They believe they are "too advanced" or "too strong and powerful" to need it, even though their need for it is obvious.

With Commitment and Willingness included in a fitness program, many other qualities, such as Perseverance, Humility, and Open-minded, seem to cling to them or acquired during the course of the program. I cannot say it is not possible to have success without Commitment and Willingness, but I have not seen a successful fitness program without them! Delaying the beginning, never helps the situation. Call today and let me get you back on track!

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