My goal planning process is simple and an analysis of it is going to help you understand how to set and meet your own goals. I published an article (Setting Goals for Fitness and Bodybuilding) this past week that touches on the topic, but for the next few weeks I will be looking at goal setting. It is an important topic with so many people in love with New Year's resolutions and the holidays right around the corner. When I set goals I follow a specific set of steps that include a realistic look at where I am, a realistic look at where I would like to be, a plan to reach the place I want to be, breaking the goal down into manageable pieces, taking measurements and then focusing on the achievement of the goal. I mentioned in the previous article that I use the SMART goal system.
My Goal Planning Involves a Realistic Look at Where I Am
In order to know where I want to be I have to know where I am. I sit down and take measurements (body fat percentage, scale weight, lean body mass calculation, circumference measurements, etc.) and get a clear picture of where I am currently sitting. Sometimes I am extremely unhappy with where I am and other times just a little uncomfortable, but change is the name of the game. The key here is to be realistic. If I am carrying too much fat I have to admit it. I cannot sugar coat anything or my goal will not be as powerful as it should be.
My Goal Planning Involves A Realistic Look at Where I Want to Be
The next step is to decide a realistic spot for me to be at. If I am focusing on body fat percentage as a goal, I will pick a number that I want to reach. I will then pick a date by which I need to be there. Both the body fat percentage and the date of completion both need to be realistic or I will simply be discouraged and fail at the goal.
My Goal Planning Involves Creating an Outline for Achieving the Goal
A plan is essential here. If I am focusing on body fat percentage I will want to create a fat burning routine that I can follow until the goal is accomplished. This is going to include diet, weight training and cardio. It will involve planning each day of the total goal period. It should be as specific as possible.
My Goal Planning Involves Bite-sized Pieces
If I start at 22% body fat and want to reach 8% body fat it is going to take a minimum of 14 weeks to accomplish that goal. In order to stay on point with the goal I must break it down into bite-sized pieces. I must have little sub-goals that are there to push me towards the ultimate goal. As I stated in other articles on this topic, you don't eat a frog in one bite so you shouldn't expect to achieve a goal in one bite.
My Goal Planning Needs a Starting Point
In order to know if I have been successful I need a starting point. This is the point at which I would take body fat percentage measurements again along with circumference measurements. These will be a jumping off point for me to see my progress going forward.
My Goal Planning Needs Focus
After doing everything else listed above I go to work on accomplishing the goal. I give it my complete and total attention. My focus is on getting that goal done. I put my all into it.
In the coming weeks I will take a look at each of these topics in greater detail. I will outline exactly how I accomplish my goals. I will show you pictures of the things I write down in order to accomplish each step of the goal setting process.