Goals, not resolutions!
RESOLUTION – definition: a promise to yourself to do or not to do something
GOAL – definition: the act of stating clearly what you want to achieve
As the New Year fast approaches I have been thinking about New Year’s Resolutions, or rather why we shouldn’t make them. Why not I hear you ask? Well, in my opinion I think News Year’s Resolutions are often hopeless because:
- They are usually vague
- They are often unrealistic
- There is usually no measurable time span
- They are easily broken
- They are often what someone else want you to change
- They have no structure or action plan
So, this year lets set some GOALS instead. In terms of fitness we would use the acronym SMART but this can also be applied to all sorts of lifestyle changes that you may be wanting to make.
SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound.
SPECIFIC: We need the goal to be clear and specific. It’s no good just saying “I want to lose weight” or “I want to save some money”. How much weight in lbs or kgs? How many dress sizes do you want to drop? How much money do you want to save? Long-term goals are the end result and are more often realised if short and medium-term goals are set along the way.
MEASURABLE: Fairly easy if it’s weight loss as you can log weekly weight loss progress and the need to shop for new clothes! Money is also very trackable using a spreadsheet or my money app.
ACHIEVABLE/AGREED: Goals need to be realistic, its always better to under estimate than over estimate what we think we are capable of. Are you willing to exercise and make key diet changes? Can you stick to the new budget?
REALISTIC: Is your current lifestyle ready to accept the changes that are needed to achieve the goal? How will the changes fit with your family, work and available time?
TIME-BOUND: If a goal has no deadline it can be put off. Give yourself enough time to do it with the smaller intermediate goals along the way. Building habits takes time. Set a start and end date.
So here is one of mine for 2018: a goal to run more often:
SPECIFIC – I will run 3-5k, 2-3 times a week
MEASURABLE – Use map my run to log workouts
ACHIEVABLE – yes, not planning to run for more than ½ hr
REALISTIC – Be prepared to run at different times of the day to fit in with work/weather
TIME-BOUND – Start first week in January, re-assess in March
Here are some goal ideas from pinterest:
- Complete a 100 day YOGA challenge
- Save 7% of income for retirement
- Visit 2 new countries
- Read (at least) 12 books
- Live in a tidy space