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Designing Goals That You’ll Stick To
If you’ve ever tried to improve your fitness in one way or another (whether it be strength, +size, -size, lean, weight loss or performance), you’ll know just how hard it is to stick to something after what some would call ‘the honeymoon stage’ runs out. It happens to everyone in case you were wondering.
The truth is, the results you want rarely come to you in a nice, neat, steady flow. And when you see that despite all the hard work you put in with nutrition and exercise you’re suddenly not getting the results you expect, it becomes very mentally draining to slug on without any reward. WE UNDERSTAND.
That’s why we’ve put together a few of our favourite tips to help you see the light when in these testing times (#3 I think you’ll LOVE)
#1 Don’t KNOW your why, UNDERSTAND your why
So, everyone has a reason why they’re putting themselves through the pain & suffering – this is your ‘why’.
(apart from you nutjobs who think exercise is ‘fun’ – btw, if that is you, you’ll love this! ~ My Fitness Bucketlist)
But how many of you have taken the time to understand your ‘why’?
Too often I have seen people start up a fitness regime saying ‘I just want to feel a bit fitter’ or ‘I need to tight up here, here and here’ or even ‘I want to make my ex jealous’. Sadly, these people drop off like flies around the 4-8 week mark..UNLESS they understand their ‘why’.
So for numero uno, I want you to write out in a small few words why you’re doing this to yourself (because, let’s face it, it has to be worth it). Next, you underline the key words in there. Thirdly, write out a few synonyms for these words (other words that mean the same thing). Finally, pick the one that you like the most and ask yourself:
‘why does this appeal to me?’
#2 Sticking some numbers & dates on there
I know that many of you are going to let out a big huff about this one, but it’s important!
You need a way of knowing where you want to get to & by when and you need to be aware of what is working and what isn’t. The best way of doing this is to set up an event that will require you to be where you want to be (the tricky bit is finding how far away to put this). To find out when to set this event for, think of a realistic steady improvement (e.g. +1lbs muscle per week) and work out how long it will take to get you there:
duration = end goal / weekly progress
#3 Reward yourself at each milestone
This has to be the hardest one of all, right? However will you cope?
Honestly though, this is actually really essential to achieving the end goal!
Motivation is about creating what we call a ‘Positive Feedback Loop’ where you make the feeling of carrying on stronger than the feeling of quitting. Us humans, without incentives, would accomplish absolutely zilch! So make it worth it and reward your hard work..BUT (omg, Becky, look at her butt) don’t mistake reward for sabotage!
The best rewards are things that you accomplish thanks to your hard work – things like a day at the beach, a photoshoot, a sports day, a hike, a date, a family meal or even just a day of baking. These things promote healthy & happy behaviour and help you see just what you have accomplished with all your hard work.
But don’t be silly and think that you can’t have a cheeky chinese every month or so.
#4 Break the big goal down into small & medium term goals
Achieving fitness goals can be quite daunting when you look straight to the end result – especially if you’re at a stage of struggling. Instead, try to work out what components make up that end goal and which one you will target first. Then, dig further down and see what small steps make up each of those components and THESE are your primary goals.
I’ll give you an example: Jane wants to look like her favourite figure skater in 1 year. She finds out that this figure skater has 12% less body fat than her and weighs 24lbs less than her; she also notes that this figure skater squats 60kg more than her. Therefore, if she loses 2lbs, 1% body fat and adds 5kg to her squat each month she will achieve this end goal. Now she can find out that she must eat 250kcal less than she expends each day, and she must squat 90% of her 1 rep max (we’ll say 18kg) for 20 reps, 5 days per week. Note that the medium term goals are not always linear and you must trust that the short term goals will get you there.
There are my 4 top tips for setting your own fitness goals. So sit down, give yourself 15-30 minutes and get writing down some content that is going to help you hit that goal of yours!
If you’re struggling with this or would like me to check it over for you, Email what you’ve got to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll shed a bit more light on the subject.
We cover all this content and a lot more with all our members to help them stay on track and achieve the goals they REALLY want to achieve. If you would like to make a free enquiry about our services and what we could do for you, go to the membership page on our website.
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