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Fitness Goal For 2021

With the end of the year rapidly approaching (thank goodness!) and a new year only a few months away, it’stime to start thinking about making (and committing to) some fitness goals for 2021.

For anyone who’s committed to a workout plan or goal in the past, you know that it is way easier to come up with workout goals than follow through with them. We get so excited thinking about our goals for the year to get those 6-pack abs you’ve been dreaming about, or signing up for the 10k charity race you’ve always wanted to run, or committing to a 5 day a week workout routine, or losing10 pounds.

Then life gets in the way and your fitness goals go untouched and unaccomplished. You might end up feeling ashamed of your lack of progress or frustrated with yourself for not following through Does this sound familiar?

This goal setting and frustrating inability to achieve those goals is something I’ve struggled with throughout my life. There would be days of high motivation and excitement where I’d announce my very ambitious goals to the world, only to realize a few months later that I completely forgot about them.

While today I’m not perfect and absolutely human when it comes to goal setting, I’ve discovered these top 8 tips that I use in my own life to establish goals that I can actually follow through on:

  1. Set realistic SMART goals
  2. Make short-term goals and daily commitments to reach those
    SMART goals
  3. Hang up your goals in a visible place
  4. Make time in your schedule
  5. Tell people about it
  6. Grab a buddy
  7. Set yourself up with instruments for success
  8. Track your workouts and your progress

Here’s the secret though: you have to commit. No goal can be accomplished if you don’t try and you don’t put in the work. But the good news is that there are ways you can set yourself up for easier success.

1. SET REALISTICS SMART GOALS-

You might have heard of SMART goals before, but if you haven’t it stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time- bound. The biggest mistake I see people making when setting fitness goals is not making them SMART goals. If your goal isn’t SMART, your likelihood of sticking to that goal is practically nonexistent.

A few years back I had a goal to “build my upper body strength”. This goal isn’t specific, I had no way of measuring whether or not I’d achieved that goal, since I hadn’t set parameters for what “upper body strength” meant it was hard to know if and when I’d achieved it, and without a time deadline in place, there was no real accountability to check in on my progress. Fast forward a year and

very little progress was made towards this “build upper body strength” goal and I ended up frustrated with my continuing lack of upper body strength.

That’s when I realized that it’s hard to work towards your goals if you don’t know exactly what you are trying to achieve. If your goal is to “lose weight” you need to ask yourself how much weight do you want to lose and by when? If your goal is to “work out more you need to ask yourself what is realistic for my schedule and what exactly is “more”?

Only by setting goals that are specific in nature, can be measured, are realistic for you, and have a deadline, can you actually set out for success in achieving them.

2. MAKE SHORT TERM GOALS AND DAILY COMMITMENTS TO REACH THOSEGOALS-

Some of the most important fitness goals that we set for ourselves are the big ones. Our dreams of losing weight or building muscle are definitely realistic if you put in the work but how exactly do you put in the work?

The best way to work towards achieving your SMART goals is to break down that goal into smaller, digestible chunks. If your goal is to compete in a 10k by the end of 2021 then what does your monthly and weekly schedule need to look like to achieve this? Before you commit to this big goal, make sure you are aware of the smaller steps you need to take to get there and add those smaller goals to your list.

Your smaller goals are just as important, if not more important, than the larger ones you set for yourself. By having smaller goals that are easier to hit you build confidence in yourself, you set a clearer path towards success, and you feel less intimidated by the actions you need to take.

3. HANG UP YOUR GOALS IN A VISIBLE PLACE-

One of the biggest reasons why we don’t achieve our goals is because we forget about them. Even the most important goals you set for yourself are often de-prioritized when the realities of our busy life come crashing down on us.

Sometimes it’s important to have a gentle reminder visible to us to keep our goals top of mind. That way we can’t as easily forget the and are more likely to make progress towards them.

There is something about picking up a pen and actually writing out the SMART goals you want to achieve. By writing them down it takes the goals out of your head and actually makes them real. By writing them down and posting them up to see every day, you’ve made a commitment to yourself. A commitment that is a lot harder to ignore.

4. MAKE TIME IN YOUR SCHEDULE-

Often the biggest obstacle I hear is “I want to work out, but I don’t have time!” If working out was your only priority then you’d have no issue hitting your goals, but that’s not how life works. There is work, bills to pay, social events, chores, kids, and other crazy things life likes to throw at us.

As someone who sometimes wishes there were 48 hours in a day as opposed to 24, I can definitely relate.

We are all busy but if a goal is important to you, you can make time for it.

If you are reading that sentence and saying to yourself, “I seriously do not have any time for my fitness goals” then I recommend tracking your activity for a full week. Write down every single thing you do every day for a whole week (be super honest here) and at the end of the week take a look at how you spend your time.

What activities could you shift around in your schedule or cut out completely? Are you noticing trends of behavior that aren’t productive? For example, do you spend 4 hours throughout the day checking your email and getting distracted from projects when you could give yourself dedicated time to do this? Do you spend an hour looking at social media at the end of your day when you could be scheduling in a workout class?

Sometimes the time we don’t think we have is actually disguised by unproductive habits or unnecessary activities. By clearing those/ out, and readjusting your schedule to fit in the activities you need to do to hit your goals, you have a higher likelihood of achieving them.

5. TELL PEOPLE ABOUT YOUR GOALS-

You might have heard of SMART goals before, but if you haven’t it stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time- bound. The biggest mistake I see people making when setting fitness goals is not making them SMART goals. If your goal isn’t SMART, your likelihood of sticking to that goal is practically nonexistent.

A few years back I had a goal to “build my upper body strength”. This goal isn’t specific, I had no way of measuring whether or not I’d achieved that goal, since I hadn’t set parameters for what “upper body strength” meant it was hard to know if and when I’d achieved it, and without a time deadline in place, there was no real accountability to check in on my progress. Fast forward a year and

very little progress was made towards this “build upper body strength” goal and I ended up frustrated with my continuing lack of upper body strength.

That’s when I realized that it’s hard to work towards your goals if you don’t know exactly what you are trying to achieve. If your goal is to “lose weight” you need to ask yourself how much weight do you want to lose and by when? If your goal is to “work out more you need to ask yourself what is realistic for my schedule and what exactly is “more”?

Only by setting goals that are specific in nature, can be measured, are realistic for you, and have a deadline, can you actually set out for success in achieving them.

6. GRAB A BUDDY -

One of the benefits of sharing your fitness goals with your supportive community is that you might end up with a workout buddy who has similar goals to you. If you can get a friend or

family member involved in your workout routine you can both hold each other accountable to the goals you have set for yourself.

If your goal is to workout more frequently, try and set up a few days of working out with a friend. When you make a commitment to workout with someone, it is a lot harder to skip. Now you are not only giving excuses to yourself, but to another person. For the person who needs a lot of social support and accountability, this tip is crucial for success.

7. SET YOURSELF UP WITH INSTRUMENT FOR SUCESS -

If you have a goal to be able to bench 100 pounds, you are going to need equipment to make that happen. If you have a goal to do yoga 3 times a week. After you’ve decided on your workout goals, you need to ask yourself: what equipment do I need to be successful? And take the time to get the equipment, the membership, the app, or the space in your apartment you need to get started.

This might seem like an easy or “duh” tip for sticking to your fitness goals, but you’d be surprised by how often a lack of equipment, space, or options can create a barrier to getting in the flow of a workout routine.

After a long day of work it’s a lot easier to skip your workout routine if you haven’t done the research yet on the app you want to use or you haven’t cleared out any space in your house to workout. Get the equipment needs out of the way first so that you can eliminate as many barriers to working out as possible.

8. TRACK YOUR WORKOUTS AND YOUR PROGRESS-

I didn’t start seriously following my own workout routine until I started writing down my workouts every week. Tracking your workouts creates a layer of accountability that can actually help motivate you to stick to a routine. There are a ton of different ways you could track your workout. Some people use apps to track their progress, others keep a note on their phone, and others have something they print out and post up.

For me, I have a physical calendar in my room and every day I write down the workout I did on that day or I highlight a giant yellow circle if I did not complete a workout. My fitness goal is to workout 5–6 days a week and every single day I look at that calendar and plan out how I’m going to hit that goal. There is even a bit of shame when I have to make a giant yellow circle on a day that I had originally planned on working out.

I don’t think anyone should be ashamed of their lack of fitness progress, but sometimes the added pressure of a fitness tracker

can be a helpful motivator. While this strategy isn’t for everyone, I have found that it not only motivates me towards my goal but it’s actually kind of fun to track my progress and look back at what I’ve done.

Getting into a new routine takes time and being able to check an achievement off of your list takes even more time. You aren’t going to be the Arnold Schwarzenegger of strength training after your first week of following your routine. This can be incredibly discouraging at first because we want to see results and we want to know that the work we are putting in is helping us towards our goals.

But here’s my promise to you: if you stick with your routine and you follow these 8 tips, you will see progress. It won’t take long before you notice your body changing, or you notice a shift in your attitude towards your routine, or you start to be able to lift heavier weights or run for longer distances. The key to making progress is being patient with yourself and finding strategies that support youin your goals.

And if things aren’t working? Adjust your plan or your goal! It’s important to adjust and adapt to what makes sense for you, your schedule, and your body. So go forth and conquer those workout plans in 2021

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