In order to achieve your fitness goals, it’s important to take some time to make a plan of action. You can definitely achieve anything you set your mind to, but a concrete plan will help to ensure that you are successful. This post will just cover goal-setting. The next post will cover the details of a basic workout plan and the things you should consider.
If you’ve never worked out or it’s been a while, don’t worry. Everyone has to start somewhere. Every master starts out as a disaster. 🙂
Developing your plan doesn’t have to take you a lot of time. An hour or two should do the job.
If you have little to no fitness experience, it is strongly recommended that you consult with a fitness professional before starting your routine. They will confirm you are on the right track and may offer some helpful advice.
Assessing The Current Situation
You should have a baseline from where to start before setting any goals. How many pushups can you do in a minute? What is your resting heart rate (before and after exercise)? What are your measurements? Body fat level?
How many pushups can you do in a minute? What is your resting heart rate (before and after exercise)? What are your measurements (especially waistline)? How much body fat percentage do you have?
Further, if you’ve never worked out or haven’t in a long time, it’s advisable that you consult with your doctor before embarking on a routine.
Establishing Some Goals
You should aim for no more than 2 or 3 goals that you want to achieve with your new fitness plan. The most effective methodology to develop your goals is using the SMART protocol.
Specific – Avoid terms like “getting in shape”, “being fit” or “feeling better”, use specific language like “I want to lose 20 lbs.” or “I want to be able to do 100 pushups in a minute”. If you want to get in shape or get fit, define what that means. If you don’t define your goal, how will you ever know when you get there?
Measurable – Similar to the above point, having a goal that’s measurable allows you to gauge your progress. If you say you want to be able to run a 4-minute mile, we can measure that at any given time. This is also why vague goals are ineffective. They can’t be measured. Therefore, you’ll never know when you’ve achieved them.
Attainable – Is your goal something you can achieve? Let’s say you set a goal to lose 20 lbs. from your belly in 6 weeks. That’s 1 lbs. a week. Are you committed to put in the work necessary to achieve that goal?
Realistic – In order for you to stay motivated, your goal must be realistic. In other words, If this is your 1st time working out, maybe setting a goal of climbing Mt. Everest is not such a good idea. Stick with goals that are slightly out of your grasp. There’s nobody saying you can’t climb Mt. Everest. Just try to work on a few mini-goals to build up to that.
Time-sensitive – set a deadline. It’s been said that a goal without a deadline is just a dream. It may happen, by chance, but it’s not likely that you’ll have anything to do with it. When do you want to shed that 20lbs by? Are you getting ready for an event like a race or a wedding?
The Relevancy Challenge
You should also ask yourself if your goal is relevant. Will it help you in your life? Is it part of some bigger plan/goal? What is the purpose?
I can attest to the fact (as can many others, I’m sure) that when you feel like quitting, your purpose will add much-needed motivation and help to re-energize you.
I also feel that a bigger goal means that you’ll need a deeper or more important purpose to keep you going in tough times.
Guaranteed, you will want to quit. It’s best to be prepared.
What do you need to accomplish this goal? Who do you need? Will you need or have access to a gym? Will you need a personal trainer?
This is the point where you should also consider your schedule. How much time do you need to devote to this new routine? Do you have the time available?
If money or time are challenges for you, I would suggest you pick up The Men’s Exercise Bible by Sean Hyson and Bodyweight Workouts for Men by Sean Bertram (If you’re a female of the species, please look for similar books)
What may happen to make you lose sight of your goal?
What will you do when this obstacle arises?
Is there anything you can do proactively to prevent the obstacle from arising in the first place?
Like I said before, you can do anything to which you set your mind. It’s just a matter of taking that moment to set your mind up right.
To be continued…in the next part, I’ll discuss the actual details you should consider in your workout routine.
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Thanks and have a great day!