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HOW TO SET GOALS YOU ACTUALLY REACH!

HOW TO SET GOALS YOU ACTUALLY REACH! Lean Strong Fitness & Wellness
Goal setting…. It’s one of the most frustrating, intimidating parts of fitness (and life) for many people, and also one of the most important. At Lean Strong Fitness and Wellness, we have members with all sorts of goals – fat Loss, muscle gain, endurance, injury prevention, rehab, mobility, mental health… you name it. Sometimes people come in with a clear picture of what they want to achieve. And other times their goal is….hazy at best. Getting a clear goal, is both an art and science, so here’s a quick framework you can use. HOW TO SET GOALS YOU ACTUALLY REACH! Lean Strong Fitness & Wellness  

FIRST, DETERMINE WHAT YOU WANT TO ACCOMPLISH.

If you’re saying “well, duh”, keep in mind a lot of people aren’t actually clear on what they want, and without a destination it’s very hard to plot the journey. For some this is easy, “I want to fit into my clothes from 10 years ago,” or “I don’t want to be winded going up the stairs,” or “I need to lower my blood pressure from A to B”. For others this is more of an art. “Well, I just want to FEEL better”, or “I want to FEEL fit”. Years ago I was more of the former and always had concrete goals, and lately I’ve been more of the latter with feeling based goals. So if like me, you tend to feel the goals more generally, here’s some exploratory questions to ask yourself:
  • What will I be able to do when I feel that way?
  • How will that feeling improve my life?
  • How an I held back right now by not feeling that way?
Remember, there is no right or wrong for this – they are your goals. And the more clearly you can define them, the better the chances of success.   HOW TO SET GOALS YOU ACTUALLY REACH! Lean Strong Fitness & Wellness

SECOND, DETERMINE YOUR “WHY”.

I’ll keep this one short as we’ve all heard it before – the more powerful your motivation and your “why”, the more likely you are to succeed. This is a very challenging part, so I’ll give you my super secret trick. Ask yourself “why” 5 times to get 5 layers deep. For instance I want to lower my blood pressure from A to B “Why is that important to me?” (x1) Well, having lower blood pressure is healthier “Why is that important to me?” (x2) Well, I don’t want to have a heart attack or other issues? “Why is that important to me?” (x3) I want to be able to live a long a healthy life “Why is that important to me?” (x4) I don’t want to die young “Why is that important to me?” (x5) I want to be a role model for my family, and be a healthy grandparent for my grandkids. As you can see, the first couple “whys” aren’t nearly as powerful as the last couple. I don’t want to die young, and spending time with grandkids, is a LOT more motivating to get you through the hard times than the thought “lower blood pressure is healthier”. Again, this is a hard step, but a worthwhile one. When you feel your stomach get tight or you tear up a bit, you’re on the right track!    

THIRD, PICK YOUR STRATEGY.

This is the “how”, or as you might have heard the “process goal”, which is essentially a habit. This is what you can focus on. It’s all fine and dandy to want to go to Hawaii, but it’s important to consider how you want to get there. Do you want to do a flight with no layovers and pay more money for it? Do you want multiple layovers to save money but you have to sleep in the airport? Do you prefer to walk to BC and then take a Jet Ski? Breaking down the goal into the “how” is important. When you are headed to Hawaii, you are excited about the destination, but still need to remember to bring your passport and show up to the airport on time so you don’t miss the flight. By focusing on the process you make sure you don’t miss a step. As an actual fitness example, if you want to fit into the clothes that fit you 10 years ago, you probably want to lose some fat and build some muscle. So you’ll want a “how” that involves nutrition, such as tracking calories, mindful eating, meal prepping, increasing vegetables, or a regular eating routine. You’ll also want a “how” that involves strength and endurance exercise, such as hiring a trainer, an accountability group you go for hikes with, an online program you can follow along, or working out at home. There are no right or wrongs (which will be explained in the next step), start with what resonates with you.
HOW TO SET GOALS YOU ACTUALLY REACH! Lean Strong Fitness & Wellness     HOW WILL YOU REACH YOUR GOALS?  
 

FOURTH, IT’S TIME TO GOLDILOCKS THE “HOW” FOR YOU.

This is where the art comes in to make your initial goal a habit. At LSFW, we think in terms of the maximum, medium, and minimum, and do it like this: Maximum: What’s the MOST I can do for my “how” on my BEST days? Medium: What’s a realistic action step I can do with 8/10 success or higher? Minimum: What can I do even on my worst days as an absolute minimum? For instance, if you wanted to increase exercise, your maximum might be every day, minimum might be 1x/wk, and medium is 3x/wk. For ALMOST everyone (this means you), start with the medium and see how you feel after 2 weeks. You can always increase, but it’s better to get 3x/wk in and feel good about it than 3x/wk and beat yourself up for not getting everyday. HOW TO SET GOALS YOU ACTUALLY REACH! Lean Strong Fitness & Wellness

LASTLY, TRACK YOUR SUCCESS AND ADJUST.

We’ve all heard what gets measured gets managed, and it’s true. This doesn’t mean you need to track your weight every day, or weight your food. However, it does mean, you need to measure YOUR version of success. It can be how good you feel, energy levels, sleep, etc. Just track: 1. How well are you following your habit (from step 4 above)? 2. How well is that habit working with your goals? If you’re on track, HIGH FIVE! Don’t’ change anything – you’re doing awesome! And, if you’re not on track, adjust. Maybe you are getting good results but it’s mentally draining and you feel like you might crash and burn. Ease off a bit, give it two weeks, then reassess. Or maybe you aren’t seeing the progress you want. Take a look at the options and see where you can push it a bit more to see what works. As a shameless plug, this is the benefit of a coach – an objective person who’s on your team to help you make sure the time and energy you’re investing in your goals is worthwhile. Alright, as a quick recap:
  1. Determine what you want to accomplish.
  2. Determine your “why”.
  3. Pick your strategy.
  4. It’s time to Goldilocks the “how” for you.
  5. Track your success and adjust.
If this is something that feels daunting to you, fear not! This is EXACTLY what we take people through in our complimentary strategy session. Check us out to find out more about how we can help you reach your fitness goals.

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