Let’s begin with a story...vacationing in a big city...
New York City was my home for 10 years. It’s a big City. Often when people would visit I would ask them where would they like to go or what would they like to see. Often they would respond, “lets just go into the City” (I lived in Brooklyn and Astoria Queens).
New York is a big City. “Going into the City” can mean almost anything. The end result is you take in some sites but exhaust yourself walking around not seeing as much as you could if you planned appropriately.
I would always advise people before they came to do a little research into what they would like to see so we can map it out and schedule it so they would see maximum sites with minimum effort.
...Not that I’m not a fan of people walking. If people would just walk more on a daily basis (and back off the sugar and processed carbs) we probably wouldn’t have the levels of obesity and obesity related diseases we do...Ahh, but I digress...
The same is true for fitness. A clearly defined goal can help you avoid wasting time, energy, and possibly money. You or your trainer / coach can more easily plan what it is you want to achieve and program how to get there.
The more defined your goals the better. The best way to do this is to ask yourself; what do you want? When do you want it? And why, why, why do you want it?
The “what” and the “when” are often fairly easy to uncover. “I want to lose 20 lbs.” I want to deadlift twice my bodyweight.” “I want to run a marathon”.
When the “what” is vague the “when” can be a little challenging to commit to. But, if the “What” is specific you can commit pretty easily... “I want to lose 20lbs before my 20th high school reunion.” “I want to hit my twice bodyweight deadlift at XYZ powerlifting competition next year.” I want to run the New York City Marathon in 6 months”.
The why can often be challenging to uncover. However, the “why” is what gives you purpose. The “why” is what allows you to dig in deep when the it becomes challenging. As it always does at some point. (If not, you’re not taking on challenging enough goals.)
To get to your “real why” keep asking yourself, “why is this important to me?”. Ask yourself this at least three times. Write it down and don’t judge your answers, just observe.
Two other aspects of goals setting I think are important to mention and establish are: finding a way to put yourself on the hook, find people to help hold you accountable and sticking to the task.
I’ll cover these in next week’s post!
To be continued...