Setting Running and Fitness goals
by Coach Briody
How to Set Running & Fitness Goals
Fitness goals are something thousands of people set out to accomplish each day. Why do they fail? Making promises to yourself to go to the gym everyday is not a goal. More specifically, it is not a clear goal. Even actually going to the gym everyday is not a goal. Let's simplify and divide goals into 3 groups: physical, nutritional, and behavioral.
• Physical Goal: What is it that you want to change physically about your body? Is it your appearance, strength, flexibility or perhaps, endurance? Or maybe, the physical goal is to fit into your favorite pair of jeans that have become a bit too snug. You get the idea.
• Nutritional Goal: You want to change your eating habits. Eat less processed foods or perhaps maybe not eat late at night. Most of us can find ways to improve in this area. Eating a well-balanced diet is essential for changing body composition. A diet rich in complex carbohydrates and fiber, such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables, lean proteins such as chicken and fish, and healthy fats such as virgin olive oil and nuts are a surefire way to give the body the proper fuel it needs. Eating smaller portions coupled with eating every few hours optimizes your metabolism and keeps you energized all day long! Simple, yes?
• Behavioral Goals: This is an important part of the overall "fitness goal" process and is often overlooked. Examples are, getting enough sleep, quitting smoking, consuming less alcohol. These are behaviors that will have a direct impact on how we can stay on track. Quite often a positive change in behavior will have a positive impact on how we look and feel.
Now that we have sorted it out, take 3 index cards, and on each of them write down your same 3 goals on each. Be precise. One goes in your wallet or purse, the next on or in the fridge, and the third in a drawer that you open everyday. These will serve as your reminders of your targets.
- Plan your goals: How will you achieve them?
- Benchmark Progress: Seeing small steps toward the target will keep you motivated.
- Make your goals attainable. Be realistic.
- Plan training: Make an appointment with yourself for training and find a workout routine that will keep you inspired. Be sure to add exercise variety to your workouts.
- Set goals that are measurable: Lower body fat, slimmer waistline, lower cholesterol, faster mile etc.
- If resources allow it, seek guidance from a qualified personal trainer and/or dietitian.
With clear fitness targets and a proper plan you can easily stick with and accomplish your fitness goals.
By Coach Briody
ACE certified Personal Trainer