Effective Weight Loss Relies on Science not Willpower
Katelyn Sander

Effective Weight Loss Relies on Science not Willpower

Living Well

“I could exercise more, eat more vegetables, be “healthier”, lose weight… if I only had more willpower.”

Stop right there. Not only is that statement untrue, that type of negative, self-deprecating talk is in fact what sets you up for failure time and time again.

This notion that people who are able to prioritize exercise and healthful, moderate eating habits have more self-control than others isn’t healthy or helpful.

Let’s look at a few proven facts:

  • Once a lifestyle change gets embedded in your routine, it becomes second nature. And doesn’t require any willpower at all.


  • Forming a new habit typically takes anywhere from 12 weeks to 12 months. It takes patience, perseverance, and loads of positive reinforcement. Negative self-talk will derail that journey in a heartbeat. 


  • Preparation is vital. It sets you up for success. Schedule time to grocery shop – in person or online. Stock your cupboards and fridge with delicious, healthy food. Schedule a time to workout every day. Try to eat on a consistent schedule so you avoid getting insanely hungry. Plan physical activities outdoors with friends and family (we tend to cancel workouts for ourself but will avoid doing so when it affects people we care about). 

  • Framing exercise and healthy foods as positive things (instead of things you “have to do/eat”) will actually increase your desire to do the activity and your craving for the healthy foods. Focus on what you CAN eat and what you CAN do. 

  • Focusing on how a healthful change will make you feel is far more powerful and motivating in the long run than focusing on how the change will ultimately make you look. There is nothing wrong with getting excited about toned arms and a slimmer waistline. Think of these as positive side effects that will come later. Feeling stronger, calmer, energized, more mobile… these are outcomes that can be realized almost immediately through exercise and eating habits. They are reinforced not just daily, but in the moment. Your back stops aching and your nerves calm down while you are powerwalking though the park. Focusing on, and assigning value to these more immediate changes powerfully reinforces the behaviour, and makes it far more likely you will repeat it. 

  • Lack of “willpower” can usually be explained by a simple biological reality: You are exhausted, extremely hungry, dehydrated, and /or stressed. Try to address that need first. 


  • Healthful living is balanced. It absolutely involves indulgences including rich, decadent foods, wonderful wine, bingeing on Netflix on the couch, and drinking lattes in bed. If you love brownies – eat them! If possible, make sure it’s a REALLY delicious brownie. Eat it slowly and enjoy every mouthful. If you think you’ll have trouble not eating the whole pan – maybe only buy a single serving. Set yourself up for success. 

  • Being on the right track doesn’t mean walking in a straight line. There’s room to deviate, side step, even dance backwards a jump or two. Then keep on moving forward. It’s more realistic. And way more fun.

Today's Inspiration

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced."  - Vincent van Gogh

Today's Live Workout

Happy Monday! Taylor is stepping in for Penny today! So, come and join us to brighten your lunchtime!


Join Taylor H today for a Total Body Conditioning workout! Challenge your cardio and strengthen your muscles from head to toe with this incredibly effective no-nonsense bodyweight training.

No equipment needed today.

Join Taylor at 12:00pm (30 minutes) from your own living room.

Click here to join the workout.

Meeting ID: 864 5295 2847
Password: 991724


Click here to view our weekly schedule.

If you have questions about our virtual live workouts, please reach out to Lauren.

Today's Trainer Moves

Most of us tend to forget about hitting our back muscles during our regular workouts – especially when we’re doing bodyweight training (which many of us are doing from home right now)!

So, Penny’s bringing you an awesome workout that will ensure you balance yourself out in strength and flexibility. You’ll hit the muscles in your back and definitely get your hips moving after sitting too long!

For questions about today’s Trainer Moves, you can connect directly with Penny here.


Do you have a “Something of the Day” you’d like us to share?! Email Meg.

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