How to Succeed at Achieving Fitness
Without Really Trying
Being fit isn’t easy. If it was obesity would not be at epidemic proportions. We know that working out can sometimes be tough to do and tough to stick to. We tend to procrastinate when it comes to hitting the gym. “There is always tomorrow, next week, next month and 5-10 pounds later…Next Year.”
If you want to succeed, you need to set goals. Without goals you lack focus and direction. Goal setting not only allows you to take control of your life’s direction; it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are actually succeeding.
To accomplish your goals, however, you need to know how to set them. You can’t simply say, “I want” and expect it to happen. Goal setting is a process that starts with careful consideration of what you want to achieve, and ends with a lot of hard work to actually do it. In between there are some very well-defined steps that transcend the specifics of each goal. Knowing these steps will allow you to formulate goals that you can accomplish.
If you want to achieve fitness, there are 5 basic rules to follow for success.
1. Set Goals that Motivate you
First, start thinking about what’s important to you when you think about your mental and physical health. When we establish our priorities, we set an intention for our exercise accountability game plan. If you went on a road trip and thought you didn’t need a map, you’d be lost. Knowing where you want to go and how to stay on the right path is what will drive you directly to where you want to go. Make a list of your current fitness goals and list why they are important to you. Maybe you want to lose weight so you can run a 5k with your son or daughter on a specific date. There is your motivation.
2. Set SMART Goals
You have probably heard of SMART goals already. But do you always apply the rule? The simple fact is that for goals to be powerful, they should be designed to be SMART. There are many variations of what SMART stands for, but the essence is this – goals should be:
- Time Bound.
Set Specific Goals
Your goal must be clear and well defined. Vague or generalized goals are unhelpful because they don’t provide sufficient direction. Remember, you need goals to show you the way. Make it as easy as you can to get where you want to go by defining precisely where you want to end up.
Set Measurable Goals
Include precise amounts, dates, and so on in your goals so you can measure your degree of success. If your goal is to lose 5 pounds, your goal is measurable. You can monitor this by weekly weigh-ins.
Set Attainable Goals
Make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals you set. If you set a goal that you have no hope of achieving, you will only demoralize yourself and erode your confidence.
However, resist the urge to set goals that are too easy. Accomplishing a goal that you didn’t have to work hard for can be anticlimactic at best, and can also make you fear setting future goals that carry a risk of non-achievement. By setting realistic yet challenging goals, you hit the balance you need. These are the types of goals that require you to “raise the bar” and they bring the greatest personal satisfaction.
Set Relevant Goals
Goals should be relevant to the direction you want your life to take. By keeping goals aligned with this, you’ll develop the focus you need to get ahead and do what you want. Set widely scattered and inconsistent goals, and you’ll fritter your time – and your life – away.
Set Time-Bound Goals
You goals must have a deadline. Again, this means that you know when you can celebrate success. When you are working on a deadline, your sense of urgency increases and achievement will come that much quicker.
Accountability is Important in Attaining Your Fitness Goals
Workout accountability gives you added incentive to stay committed to an exercise program. It’s about changing your mindset from exercise being a means to an end to each and every workout being something that will change your life for the better. Accountability means establishing guidelines, and even consequences that would encourage you to never miss another workout. This is why group exercise works so well. There are other people that you workout with that help keep you accountable. It may only be the idea in your mind that if you don’t show up for a class, the instructor or others in the class will think less of you, or you may have established a workout buddy that gives you a hard time if you miss a class. Either way, there is a reason not to miss a class.
1) Make a schedule.
Take a look at your week and find days and times when you’re free to workout. Aim for keeping a regular schedule. But if that isn’t possible, every Sunday set your schedule for each individual week. At The Firm Cardio Studio, you can schedule your classes 1 or 2 weeks in advance. By doing this you have made a commitment that you need to be accountable to.
2) Find a workout buddy.
Having a support system of friends who have similar goals and exercise interests turns workouts into a more social activity. The Firm Cardio Studio strives to provide a community-centered environment where-while everyone has individual goals, everyone keeps each other accountable and excited to come back for more! If you haven’t already done so, ask another member that takes similar classes if they will be your workout buddy. Or if you notice another member struggling to be consistent offer to be their’s. It will prove to be mutually beneficial.
3) Set or pack your workout clothes for the next day.
Much like you’d pack a briefcase, diaper bag, or school bag, packing a gym bag will make things much easier, and you’ll be more likely not to skip the gym. If you’re a morning person, pack the gym bag or even set your gym shoes by the front door, the night before. If you work out at night, throw a packed gym bag in your car. Either way, after you finish one workout, get ready for the next!
4) Set a “No Excuse” Rule
It is easy to find an excuse not to do something you don’t want to do. Commit to yourself that you will accept “no excuse”. If something comes up that interferes with a planned workout, look for a workaround before letting it take priority over your workout. Maybe you have to leave the class early or switch a planned class to another time, but don’t skip it all together if at all possible.
5) Set up a reward system.
Sometimes we need a little added bonus for making even short-term goals like just making it to the gym this week. Set up rewards for hitting those goals with things like buying a nicer-than-usual body lotion, book a massage, or buy new gym shoes. The Firm Cardio Studio offers a rewards program. For every 50 classes you take, we give you $5 store credit. You can use this store credit to buy yourself that cute little t-shirt you have been eyeballing. We all need a little boost sometimes and if reaching goals means celebrating milestones and non-scale victories, we’re all for it!