“The greatest danger for most of us isn’t that our aim is too high and miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it” – Michelangelo
At several points in our lives, we run into obstacles that challenge us to revaluate different portions of our lives. This need for a plan can surface in our work lives, relationships, and in our journey to find balance in health and wellness. Many of us have visited this epiphany time and time again, where we realize our health has been slowly put on the back burner when other “more important” issues arise. So how does one create achievable, realistic fitness goals that will hold true in the long run? In my book Trading Pain for Purpose, I explore the full scope in taking charge of your goals including your health goals. For a taste of my book, we will look into creating practical fitness goals.
- Establish what you want: Yes, we all want to be amazingly fit with a next-to-nothing body fat percentage. But before trying to tackle a million goals at once, I find it extremely effective to tackle one task at a time. Are you looking to tone muscles? Are you training for a 5k marathon? Are your energy levels plummeting due to lack of movement? Finding out what you really want with your fitness plan creates foundation to your future goals.
- Challenge yourself, but be practical: I believe the biggest reason people quit their journey to fitness is due to unrealistic goals. Mostly, this is because your timeline does not match the goal in a realistic, healthy way – dropping 10lbs a week won’t happen for most. Unrealistic expectations can be birthed at the very beginning of creating fitness goals, where setting aside 2 hours a day at the gym seems practical at the time but impossible a few weeks later. Challenge yourself, but keep in mind what is practical and what is influenced by adrenaline.
- Keep track of the good and dirty: This is incredibly important in being transparent with yourself during your journey. If too many sweets near bedtime is the problem, keeping a food diary is imperative. For marathon training, a stopwatch is your best friend. I want to mention that keeping track does not exclude moments of weakness! If mess-ups aren’t tracked, it is hard to gage what needs to be worked on.
- Renew your vows along the way: Newsflash – at one point, you will find every excuse to quit. In fact, you may very well drift back into bad eating habits or ignore the gym for a week. Instead of accepting defeat and sabotaging your fitness goals in their entirety, simply recommit. I have had bad days, like everyone, but the difference is in acknowledging the bad day and carrying on versus calling it quits completely.
These four steps will create a healthy foundation in your journey to wellness. I hope that you found this helpful.