It's February and I'm sure that many of you by now have set some type of health and fitness goal this year, and if you haven't yet, you will be soon. Whether your goal is to lose weight, run a marathon, eat healthier, or get stronger, the approach to those goals remain the same. I am going to give you 4 steps to give you the best chance at achieving your health and fitness goals in 2019. Just following the steps to setting goals isn't enough though. You must be prepared to do the work that is required to realize any and all of your goals.
SET ATTAINABLE GOALS
In my experience, people tend to dream up extremely lofty goals that they have no chance of achieving. Failing to set attainable goals is an easy way to become discouraged and quit. Let's use weight loss as an example. When you set a goal to lose 20 lbs in a month (NOT REALISTIC) and at the end of the month you end up losing 7 lbs, it may be viewed as a failure. However, if you do a little math, you will discover that over the course of a year, losing 7 lbs per month totals out to be 84 lbs. My advice, set small goals that you know you can attain so that when you go beyond that goal, you will have a huge confidence boost to keep you going.
HAVE A PLAN
After you set your goal that is realistic and attainable, the next thing you want to do is get a plan together. As health and fitness trainer, nothing frustrates me more than people who set goals but have no clue how to achieve them. If you plan to run a marathon in 6 months, doing push ups and squats every day is not going to help much. Your plan must involve specific things aimed at your goal. My advice, seek the counsel of a health and fitness professional. Dietitians, personal trainers, health coaches, behavioral health specialists, etc. can all help you develop the right plan that is specific to your goal. You can also perform internet searches based on the best ways to achieve your specific goal.
EXECUTE YOUR PLAN
Once you have formulated a plan specifically targeted to help you achieve your desired goal, its time to put the plan in action. In my next video blog "8 Reasons Why You Aren't Losing Weight", I list inconsistency as the number one reason why people are unsuccessful when attempting to lose weight. Well that premise holds true with any goal. In order to be successful at anything you have to be consistent. Executing the plan in place "sometimes" or "here and there" is a recipe for disaster. My advice, place your time for "plan execution" on your calendar or set a reminder on your phone. For example, if you are trying to improve eating habits, set a reminder for the same time each day that tells you to eat that new healthy food you want to incorporate.
TRACK YOUR PROGRESS
The last step in achieving your health and fitness goals for 2019 is tracking your progress. Tracking progress is important to determine whether you should continue with the plan you have or if you need to get a new one. Progress tracking is not a daily occurrence. It must be accompanied by patience. If you are trying to reduce your cholesterol, you should only be checking your numbers every 3-6 months. If you are trying to improve your 5k time, you might be OK checking your progress every 2-4 weeks. The point is, different goals, require different amounts of time to see progress. My advice, perform an internet search focused on what kind of time frame is normal to see progress with your specific goal. Once you figure that out, it will give you an idea of how often you should be tracking your progress.
ONE FINAL THOUGHT
Remember to be patient and stay persistent. The only magic pill is hard work and dedication. I wish you the best of luck in 2019!