Well as of this writing it is January 8th and as much as I hate to say it you have probably already broken a New Year’s resolution or slipped up on your good intentions to sticking with your fitness goals. Hey listen don’t beat yourself up over it and to be honest I really hate setting resolutions as there is about a 99% chance you will break the resolution at some point over the course of the year. However, I am a big fan of creating goals, specifically S.M.A.R.T goals. Over the years my clients and myself included saw the best results when we had written out goals that were S.M.A.R.T.
For those of you that don’t know what I am talking about let me define what S.M.A.R.T goals are. It stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. When you create a goal for yourself and it contains all five components the probability of having success dramatically increases. Let me go through an example so you can see for yourself.
In the first of example Jack says he wants to eat healthier and lose weight. Ok so looking at his goal we see that he wants to eat healthier and lose weight but it lacks the five components. He really is not specific in terms of how much weight he wants to lose and he lacks a time frame. Even if you say well it pertains to this year he still does not have the specific number of pounds and a time line. To make this fit the S.M.A.R.T model it would be better for Jack to say I want to lose 10 pounds in six months and weigh 190. Does this fit the model. Yes, it is specific (10 pounds and weigh 190), it is measurable (use scale to monitor and measure), attainable because he could lose a pound and a half a month and reach his goal, and final it is timely because it is not unrealistic to lose 10 pounds in six months.
Let’s look at another example and see if it fits are S.M.A.R.T model. Sarah is getting married and wants to lose 15 pounds. Her wedding is in 4 weeks. On the surface it looks like it could fit the model. I mean she is specific,we can measure it and it is timely (4 weeks), but is it attainable and realistic. Some might say yes depending on their drive and discipline but I would say no because when my wife and I got married I remember those last few weeks were all about engagement parties plus running around like crazy trying to get everything taken care of before the wedding. So, I say it is not a S.M.A.R.T goal and goals like these are reasons why most people tend to fail at reaching their fitness goals every year.
Oh, and one more thing. I would be remiss to say that just because you set a S.M. A.R.T goal you are going to achieve your fitness goals that you set. I might have misled you a little in my title because although I say S.M.A.R.T goals is the best way to achieve your fitness goals if you neglect to have a strong “why” beyond it you probably will not reach them. You have to a strong reason as to “why” you want to achieve your goal.
Let’s look back at our examples. Jack wants to lose 10-15 lbs because he wants to be in the best shape of his life so he can still be active with his 4 kids. If we look at Sarah her why could be is she can’t fit into the 10k dollar dress she bought 6 months ago. (I have no idea if dresses cost that much but I am sure when my girls get married they will :().
Do yourself a favor this year and go back and look at the fitness goals you set for yourself. Do they contain all 5 elements. Is it specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely. Also, do you have a strong why behind it. With it when things get tough it will be much easier to fail and leave you in the same boat as you were last year!
If you need any assistance on setting goals please don’t hesitate to reach out to me!
In health and wealth,