S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Attainable
R = Realistic
T = Timely
For a personal trainer January marks the start of the busy season, but unfortunately the surge of new business tapers off as the New Year’s resolutions take back seat to other priorities. Why is it so hard to stick to a fitness program? How are you supposed to reach your goals if you lose interest after a few weeks? Maybe the answer lies in how you are setting those goals. If you chose SMART goals you can set yourself up for success and reward instead of failure and disappointment. I am encouraging everyone to set SMART goals for 2011!
Important! WRITE IT DOWN so you can have a concrete plan to refer to along the way. Keeping good records such as measurements or journal entries will allow you to keep track of your progress. It feels great to see results on paper. It’s proof of all your hard work, and if you are feeling good about your progress you are more likely to stick with the plan. Keep in mind you can use this for system for any goal, not just fitness.
Let’s break it down…
Make sure you thoroughly examine your goal. Deep down you know what you want, so be detailed and clear in how you word it. Use active words. General goals produce general results. Specific goals get specific results.
I want to lose 10lbs and an inch and a half from my waist... Not I just want to lose weight.
I want to read the Yoga Sutras… Not I just want to learn more about yoga.
Choose goals that can be measured, so that you can track your progress. If you experience small successes along the way you will be more inclined push forward, and in the end it will be awesome to see the results.
I want to run 6 miles (Add a half mile to your run every 3 weeks).
I will meditate for 30 minutes every day (Gradually work your way up 10 minutes a day.)
Make sure your goal is within your reach. Before committing to the goal, plan out what actions you will need to execute. Make sure life and circumstances allow you to carry it out. But beware of making it too easy! Just because it is super challenging does not mean it is not attainable.
I want to start my own business this year… Not I want to be a millionaire this year.
I want meet new people this month... Not I want prince charming to sweep me off my feet and propose this month.
This goes along with attainable. Be honest with yourself. You know yourself better than anyone else, so if you cannot envision yourself completing this goal you may want to reevaluate. Don’t set yourself up for failure.
Not… I want to stop eating chocolate entirely. (When you know chocolate is your favorite thing in the world.)
Not…I want to transfer to San Diego. (When you know you will miss the change of seasons.)
Set a fixed time frame for your goal. Usually this works well when there is an event to mark the end date, such as a wedding or reunion. If you don’t have a specific day, create one! You can even set smaller time frames throughout the process to work up to the ultimate goal.
I will fit into my 2 piece bikini by spring break.
I will learn to cook 3 healthy meals by the end of the month.
Now get started! Remember to write it down. Feel free to create multiple SMART goals for the New Year. If you need help executing I would be happy to help!