The following 8 steps in goal setting for health, fitness, and weight loss can change your life. Strong statement? Maybe, but I believe it.
There's only one catch: you have to do them.
Trust me, I've tried every way possible to short-cut my way around them. Silly me, through them is the best way!
- Decide what you want. What do you want? Do you want to weigh 150 pounds, do you want to be able to run a 5k, do you want to be stronger, have more energy, get more sleep... Go ahead and think in numbers, be they scale or pant sizes, but also please think beyond them too. How do you want to feel? What do you want to be able to do? What would you like to overcome? What habits would you like to have in place?
- Write it down. Once you've brainstormed and decided what you want: write it down. Write them down as a goals list.
- Set a (realistic) deadline. When do you want to achieve these goals by? Set a date. Be realistic here. So many of us get discouraged when we don't reach a goal, but we set ourselves up for it because it was an unrealistic deadline in the first place. Do a little research. Ask a knowledgeable friend what a realistic deadline would be. Then, give each goal a deadline.
- Identify your obstacles. This will take a whole lot of honesty with yourself. Take a hard look at what is keeping you from reaching these goals. Why aren't you there right now? What has stopped you? Be especially honest about your responsibility in this. We are often tempted to pass the blame. No negative self-talk here, just get real with yourself. Most everything in our lives can be fixed simply by making different choices.
- Identify the knowledge or information (and tools) you will need to succeed. What do you need to learn? Do your research here. Google around, buy a book, talk to an expert. What do you need to overcome your obstacles and reach your goals? Revisit your list of obstacles and problem solve. What tools will help you reach your goals? Do you need running shoes, a reusable water bottle, some handweights, a gym membership, a food scale, a fitness tracker... I realize we could spend infinite money here. My advice is to look at what will really help or motivate you. What will you really use?
- Identify (and reach out to) the people you will need support from. Don't skip this step. In reaching health, fitness, and weight loss goals I find this step one of the most important. Do you need your family on board? Your friends? Your significant other? Do you need to find a support group (online or in person)? Support is huge. Ask for it. Ask for it until you get it. Do you need to make an appointment with your doctor, a nutritionist, or a trainer?
- Make an action plan. Now sit down and make a plan (again, write it down). What steps can you take each day to reach your goals. Do you need to meal plan, food prep, plan your workouts, find a training plan for a race, find an accountability partner to check in with, find an app or journal to track your food and workouts...? Make a list of every task. Then, move one-time tasks to a to-do list and daily tasks to a planner or calendar.
- WORK your plan every single day. With health, fitness, and weight loss goals consistency is your friend. It's your secret weapon. It's the key to success. Work your plan every day. Every day, every day, every day.
Make a promise to yourself today, that no matter what happens you will never give up.
Consistency and persistence are vital to your success. Every time you persist and overcome challenges, stumbles, or downright failures you become stronger. Eventually you will become unstoppable.
That is success.
Decide what you want, write it down, make a plan, and work your plan every day.
I believe in you.