How, when and why setting goals can help boost your exercise routine and create huge changes in the way you exercise. Setting goals seems simple enough, you may have joined the gym to ‘loose a bit of weight’ or ‘to get muscley’, but are those goals going to actually help you in your journey? Below we’ve written out how to best set goals and how you should be doing it.
Every goal you set, whether in fitness, or in your personal life, should be a S.M.A.R.T goal. (In other terms – a specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound one!).
Your goals should start with being as specific as possible. Instead of stating you want to loose weight or build muscle, start by trying to specify how much you want to loose.
Example – ‘I want to loose weight’ could become ‘I want to loose 4lbs’.
So, how are you going to measure this goal? If we look at the example above, in regards to weight loss, we could weigh ourselves when we set the goal and weigh ourselves again to see if we’ve dropped the weight we wanted to. Making a measurable goal is super important, otherwise how will you know when it’s been achieved?
So you’ve got your goal, you know how you’re going to measure it, but is it actually achievable? Thinking of how you can achieve this goal and how realistic it is, can stop you from setting a goal which is out of reach and ending in disappointment. For example, if you wanted to loose 4lbs within a day by doing nothing, the likelihood is, that this is unachievable. Try thinking about your work and other commitments in your life and whether this goal can be achieved within the constraints of your life.
An important aspect of your goal is to make sure its actually relevant to you. If you are looking to grow muscle but your goal is about running a 5k, then this isn’t very relevant to what you want to achieve. Make sure your goals are relevant to you and your lifestyle and you’ll be much more inclined to work towards them.
The last point in a smart goal is to make your goal time bound. It’s very easy to set a goal of ‘I want to loose 4lbs’, but when will you achieve this? A month? A year? In your lifetime? Making sure your goal has a specific end day not only gives you a deadline to work towards, it also can help in future goals and the length of time you give yourself. You may achieve your goal within a month and know that if you want to achieve a similar goal in future, you could push yourself a little harder and make the timing shorter.
Setting goals are a brilliant way to keep you on track, give you something to work towards and to make sure you have realistic goals to work towards. So have a think about how you can put the S.M.A.R.T principles into your goals and remember push yourself – you are tougher than you think.
As always, the UG team is here to help if you need to get help with any goal setting or fitness advice.
So come say Hi…