What are your bodybuilding and fitness goals? Is one of your goals to “lose weight” or maybe to “tone up” or possibly to “get leaner”? Are you going to try to “lift heavy” or “workout more”? If these are your current goals then you really need to keep reading.
Goals Should Be SMART
A goal is a road map to success. As such, goals should be SMART — Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-sensitive.
When you set a goal like “lose weight” you are setting yourself up for failure. Instead, set an amount of weight you wish to lose. Make sure to write the goal down. Word the goal as thought it has already been accomplished. It might be enough to say “I have lost 75 pounds.” While this might work, there is more that you must think about.
The goal has got to be measureable. Yes, losing 75 pounds is specific and it is measureable, but is it attainable? There are several factors that will determine attainability. One would be the actual amount of weight you want to lose combined with the amount of time you are giving yourself to lose it. Is it realistic to say “I lost 75 pounds in 2 weeks”? That clearly is not realistic. Attainable, yes, but realistic, definitely not. So how do you make your goal realistic?
All goals should have a date associated with them. It is currently November 1, 2014. Let's say you want to lose 20 pounds by January 1, 2015. Ask yourself these questions.
Is the goal specific? Yes…I am saying I will lose 20 pounds…a very specific amount of weight.
Is the goal measureable? Yes…I can get on the scale today and write down my weight and then get on the scale on January 1 and compare the difference.
Is the goal attainable? Yes…it will be a stretch, but it will require a little more than 2 pounds a week to be shed.
Is the goal realistic? Yes…20 pounds is something anyone can lose in a certain time span.
Is the goal time-sensitive? Yes…I've set the date of January 1, 2015 for the achievement of the goal.
This makes the goal SMART and you can proceed with it.
Make Sure to Eat the Frog
What happens if you need to lose 100 pounds? You are going to probably give yourself at least a year to do so and probably longer. How do you keep your motivation while heading towards this goal of losing 100 pounds? Think about this next question…how would you eat a frog if you were forced to eat one? You certainly wouldn't stuff the entire frog in your mouth all at once. You would eat the frog one bite at a time. It is the same thing with big goals that take time to accomplish. Break them into smaller goals.
I often relate to people the manner in which I changed my eating habits. I didn't just vow to eat healthier. I started out by saying “I ate 3000 calories on Sunday” and then set out to hit that goal. I then added “I drank 2 gallons of water on Monday” and set out to hit that goal. I kept doing this until all the components for the longer term goal of eating better were in place. It works because when I managed to eat 3000 calories that Sunday it motivated me to continue eating 3000 calories and it motivated me to accomplish the next baby step goal.
Make Sure to Write it Down
All your goals should be written down and they should be worded as though they've already been accomplished. The brain does something with goals that are handled in this way. Brian Tracy relates a story in which he counseled someone to write their goals down and put them in an envelope and seal it. The person wrote down 10 goals and sealed them in an envelope. They put them in a drawer and forgot about them for a year. When the envelope was opened 8 of the 10 goals were accomplished! The brain went to work accomplishing the goals as soon as they were written down. So, write down your goals and word them as though they are accomplished and you will start to see how much easier it is to accomplish all your goals.
Get An Accountability Partner
In the early days I used a blog as my accountability partner. I was a member of the Shreddersphere and I was held accountable by the other members. These days I tell my girlfriend and she holds me accountable. I will go into more detail on this topic in a later post. For now just know it is important to let other people know about your goals.
Give this topic some serious thought because it could be what's missing in your current program. If you have any other tips please leave them in the comments below.