People with goals succeed because they know where they are going. It’s as simple as that.”
– Earl Nightingale
Have goals? Here is a blueprint of sorts on how to properly set them to propel you towards success.
“I want to lose weight” is vague and arbitrary. Specific goals give you a platform from which to launch and some clarity to help you better act and create accountability. Instead of “I want to lose weight”, try “I want to lose 25 lbs in 4 months” or “I want to run a 10k in under 45 min in 6 months”.
Can you empirically keep track of your goal? Some goals are more tangible than others. For example a weight or inches goal is tangible. “More energy” is hard to quantify but a great goal all the same. You may measure this on an “energy scale” from 1-10 measured at certain intervals in the day.
This is where many fall off the wagon. Through celebrities, sketchy advertising and an “instant” mentality, we’ve been unwittingly lulled into believing that 10 lbs a week weight loss is reasonable to expect. Look at the changes you are willing to make, how much time you can dedicate to your goals and then set them. If you have quite a bit of fat to lose, aim for 2-3 lbs initially and then settle into a 1-2 lbs/week goal.
Life happens. We can be pulled off track for so many reasons. If you haven’t met your goal or have backslidden a bit, re-calibrate, re-focus, and re-commit – immediately! Our culture appears to be one of all-or-nothing. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t reach your projected goal. Just get back on the horse right away.
We have a preoccupation with scale weight. For most this seems the only number that matters. It should go without saying that using girth measurements (waist/hip), body fat and simply how your clothes fit should be used concurrently with scale weight when it comes to body composition. I’m going to take this a step further, however, and propose looking at goals outside the fat loss “box”.
Setting what I call “foundational” goals entails mindset and eating/exercise goals. Whether it’s eating an extra serving of veggies or eating out 2 less times per week or adding more activity, setting these foundational goals will give you the give you the means to accomplish your larger goals.
Write out your goals, paste them to your fridge/ipad/bathroom mirror/inside of your wallet, and never take your eye off it.
You. Can. Do it.
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