It’s that time of year again. You open up google and type in “Gyms near me” because you’ve feel awful after binging over the holidays. You tell yourself “this year will be different!” and many gyms and coaches are promoting “New Year, New You!” challenges.
We don’t have a “New Year New You” challenge at Arkitect Fitness, and for good reason.
We highly encourage people to have goals, but just like anything else, setting and accomplishing goals are a skill unto themselves. We also have a lot of experience seeing what happens when people bite off more than they can chew. The first thing you need to know is that you don’t need a new you. This may come as a surprise but you are great just the way that you are! While many people may think of themselves as either successful or unsuccessful, in reality life is not so black and white. There are plenty of examples of those who are financially successful but suffer from obesity. There are those who are extremely physically fit, but are incredibly insecure or dishonest. There are those who have amazing relationships and do emotionally fulfilling work but are struggling financially. It’s important to realize that not everything in your life will be (or can be) perfect. Once you can come to terms with that, it’s time to figure out what the next step is.
In this article we’re going to help you define and then achieve your goals.
1. Define Your Goals Clearly and Specifically
Acquiring new habits is extremely difficult, even if it’s just one single habit. What do you think the success rate is if you are trying to reshape your entire life? Not great. This task becomes even harder when your goals aren’t tangible things. A goal like “lose weight” or “get in shape” or “make more money” is too ambiguous. How much weight do you want to lose? What does being “fit” mean to you? How much more money do you want to make?
The first step is to clearly define your goals. For example for fitness, I would like to run a sub 10 minute mile. That is something that is clearly defined, and easily measured. I would also like to weigh 200lbs by the end of 2021.
Try to avoid ambiguous goals like “lose weight” or “be in better shape” as those are difficult to quantify without additional information.
2. Define your “Why”
If you walked up to a stranger on the street and said to them “would you like to make an extra $10,000/year?” every single one of them would say “yes.” But how many of those people are actually working to accomplish that? Probably few of them. Why? Because it’s not really that important to them to do so. If it were, they would be actively working on it. While we may feel compelled to pick some goals out of a hat around the new year, it’s important to ask yourself why you have those goals, because when things get tough, you’ll need to fall back on your “why” to keep you moving forward.
When motivation runs out (and it will) you’ll need to rely on your “why” to keep you dedicated to your goal.
3. Prioritize Your Goals
While we may want to adjust several things in our life at once, it’s important to figure out which goals are most important to you. The biggest advantage to prioritizing your goals is that you can then work on them in order of importance. We’re big fans of monotasking: working on one thing at one time. While some goals may be synergistic and can be achieved in conjunction with one another, many times it’s better to focus on one thing at a time. While it may seem like you’ll be delaying your secondary goals, you’ll likely accomplish each individual goal in shorter time because you’re focusing all of your energy and resources on one thing.
An example of synergistic goals would be losing 10lbs and being able to do a pull-up. As you lose weight, doing a pull-up becomes easier. An example of opposing goals would be losing 10lbs and also being able to bench press more weight. These goals are opposing because bigger bodies can more easily lift heavier weights. What would be easier would be to focus on your weight loss goal, and once you’ve achieved that, you can use some strategies to build strength while maintaining your body weight.
4. Add Actions to your Outcomes
Now that you’ve set some goals…change them. What we’ve done is laid out an end result we want, but it’s habits and action that make changes. What are the physical steps you’ll need to take to make your desired outcome a reality? If I want to be able to run a sub 10 minute mile, I’ll need to run regularly. So my goal of running a sub 10 minute mile now becomes instead to run a minimum of 3x/week.
This process also makes our goals easier to manage. If your goal is to lose 10lbs, at the end of the day today, ask yourself: Did you work on your goal today? Sometimes the answer may be clearly yes or no, but most often it will likely be a bit of a gray area. Where as if your goal is an action like “exercise 3x/week” then you can very clearly answer that question. If the answer is “no I did not work on my goal today” then it’s very easy to work on it tomorrow, because the goal is a some actionable item.
Putting it all Together
Accomplishing goals may seem like a daunting task, that’s why when it comes to fitness goals, we recommend having someone to help you manage your goals, and ensure your actions align with your outcomes. If you’re looking for gyms in Concord, look no further! Our individual training plans make sure that you’re working towards your goals, and not just following a generic workout of the day. Whether your goal is weight loss, sports performance, or just to be in better shape, reach out to us to see how we can help!