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Revving up your willpower

Apr. 05, 2013 @ 01:00 PM

Will Power may hit 225 mph in his Formula 1 Indy car, but that's hardly moving compared with the speed with which weight-loss willpower can vamoose when faced with your favorite cookie or a plate of fried chicken.

But if you want to stay on track (sorry about the bad pun), you can rev up your stick-to-it engine and cruise to the finish line thinner, healthier and with a younger RealAge.

Want to motor up your willpower and supercharge your self-control? Here's what to focus on:

Strengthen your desire to feel better and look great. Try meditating 10 minutes a day using a mantra to guide you. Your mantra might be: "Food does not stress me; I eat for health." Then sit comfortably in a quiet space and repeat that to yourself (silently or out loud) as you let your breath move in and out in a peaceful rhythm.

Do willpower exercises: If you have the urge to eat something that's not healthy, decide to flex your willpower muscles instead. Pump up the power and give yourself a pep talk: "Today, I choose fresh veggies and fruit!" As you use those muscles, they grow stronger and stronger. Soon you won't have to challenge yourself; you'll naturally opt for the healthier choices.

Bonus tip: Flex your muscles -- any muscles -- as you tell yourself you WILL do the best, right thing. Just that act, done simultaneously with exerting your willpower, reinforces it and makes it easier to reach your goal.

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, visit sharecare.com.

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