A new year, a new decade, a new chance to set your fitness goals.
As we start a new year, no doubt there are new goals you have in mind as the year kicks off. During this time of year it’s easy to get caught up in the rush of New Year's resolutions and set goals that are unsustainable and unrealistic. We then fail to achieve them and feel worse about ourselves than before we started.
The key to success is having a plan on how those goals can be achieved. Setting achievable goals will hold us accountable, expand our definition of “possible” and encourage us to push through temporary pain and discomfort for lasting change.
A good fitness goal can be “your guiding light” when you have bad days. In other words, a goal, if planned and well structured, can give you the extra incentive to keep going when motivation declines or when life otherwise gets in the way. So what are some things to remember when setting fitness goals?
Focus on one goal at a time
When it comes to setting a fitness goal, one of the biggest mistakes people make is trying to do too much at one time. Maybe you want to hit the gym every day, cut out added sugar and get at least eight hours sleep a night. These are all great goals but trying to tackle that much at once could essentially set yourself up for failure. With so many things to achieve, people tend to get anxious and if they don’t do one thing, they feel like a failure. This could then lead to negative self-talk that lowers your chances of achieving any of the goals.
Instead, pick one thing you want to crush—like, doing one push up on your toes or completing your first-ever 5 km run. Channel your efforts into achieving that before exploring another goal.
Make it your own
It’s easy to scroll through social media and feel inspired yet a little envious by the images of the super fit. Basing your goals on what others are doing and achieving is neither creative nor practical.
If we are bombarded by images of what fitness should look like and how we should do this, that and the other it can be hard to recognise what is good for you. Your goals should be yours - something that you personally are excited about and realistically able to achieve—not someone else’s.
Make it specific and measurable
Having a measurable goal allows you to keep track of your progress and the more specific your goal, the stronger the path to achieving it becomes. Wanting to be “stronger” is a great place to start but what does that actually mean to you?
Say you want to increase the number of push-ups you can do. This makes the goal measurable and saying you want to be able to do 20 push-ups in one minute makes it specific. On top of that, the goal should be time-bound as this will help focus your efforts and creates a sense of urgency that can be motivating.
Play the long game
We all want instant satisfaction, but it’s important to be realistic with the time frame you develop for achieving your goal. Change will not happen overnight.
Choose a goal that can be achieved over the course of several months or even a year. A long-term mentality will help you see your goal as a lifestyle change, rather than quick fix, and you’ll be much more likely to achieve it
Be flexible in your meaning of success
It is important to make your goal specific, but it’s also important to give yourself permission to modify it as you progress with your fitness journey. Perhaps a goal that seemed challenging at first is actually way too tough to maintain or vice versa.
Set goals you think you can achieve and then modify them as you understand more about what you are capable of. There's nothing wrong with moving the goal posts as you get more comfortable with your abilities.
Get a support system
When thinking about your goal, you should also think about who in your life can encourage, motivate, and hold you accountable to it. If the people you spend the most time with are supportive of your goals, recruit them whenever you're in need of support. It will make a huge difference.
Change is hard and it’s important to not get stuck on perfection. There may be minor setbacks but that’s OK. Just keep going - tomorrow is new day.
If you'd like help setting your goals or reaching them the team at enerG+ are here to help you, just ask us and we can help you along with way and hold you accountable to make your goals your achievements!