No matter what your fitness objectives are: gain muscle, improve running times or weight loss, it’s important to make sure your goals are realistic and that you have a plan in place to reach them. This is where goal setting comes in.
Setting yourself a fitness goal is the first step to turning your ideas and wishes in reality. When you set yourself a goal you must commit to it fully with a can do attitude!
Why is goal setting important?
Without a specific goal in mind, nothing will change! When you see someone who has changed their lives around it is because they have committed to a goal with passion and determination!
Where do I start?
Use the S.M.A.R.T. + B. rules:
Specific and significant to you
Measurable, meaningful and motivational
Achievable and attainable
Realistic, reasonable and results-oriented
Timely, tangible and trackable
Barriers and blocks
- Be Specific: Think about what you really want to achieve. Do you want to: lose weight, increase muscle mass, improve sport specific skills or tone up a few wobbly bits? Pick up a pen and write down; What do you want to achieve, Why it is important and How you are going to do it. Being specific here is very important. Avoid writing “I want to lose weight”, instead write “I want to lose 10 kilos and 5cm off my waist”.
- Measurable: You must be able to measure your progress towards achieving your goal. When you measure your progress you stay on track and remain focused and committed. Be specific here as well. “I will lose 2 kilos each month to reach by 10 kilo weight loss goal”.
- Achievable: Is it possible? Is it within my capabilities to achieve this? It can be disappointing and dispiriting to find yourself floundering and getting no closer to your goal for reasons beyond your control or the goal itself was not attainable, like “I want to lose 10 kilos in one month”.
- Realistic: The goal needs to be realistic to you and ‘do-able’ to where you are right now. A goal of never eating chocolate again is probably not realistic for a chocolate lover, however turn it around and make a positive and realistic statement of “I will eat two pieces of fruit a day and work towards reducing the amount of chocolate I eat”.
- Timely and Trackable: Set yourself a realistic time-frame with an end point so you have a clear target to work towards. Make sure you can measure and track your progress. It is important to see the smaller goals being achieved with the big picture in sight! This gives you a feeling of success and helps you stay motivated and on track.
- Barriers: Lastly think about anything that may crop up or get in your way to prevent you from achieving your goal. Write them down and have a plan of action on how to encounter them. No support – tell friends how important your goal is to you and ask for their support; get a personal trainer on board develop a plan and help you reach your fitness goal. No time – get up earlier to exercise, snack at exercise throughout the day.
Using the S.M.A.R.T. technique for setting your fitness goals will see you taking the right steps in the right direction. So stop thinking about it and take action today!