The Basics of Setting Your Fitness Goals

by Mary Lucas on January 20, 2012

Are you a goal oriented person? If you are, then you probably know that all successful people in life know the basics of setting and achieving their goals. If you want to achieve a healthy life, then setting fitness goals should be no different than anything else you do.

Setting fitness goals gives you motivation and drives you towards your short or long term success. Goal setting helps you obtain the knowledge necessary to achieve. By planning and organizing your time to exercise and eat the right meals, you’ll get the best out of your efforts.

When you set clearly defined fitness goals you should also plan to measure your progress and provide accountability. Holding yourself accountable will help you through the challenging days (such as late night eating). Your self-confidence will sky rocket as you learn more about your capabilities.

The first thing you need to do when setting fitness goals is to have a clear vision of where you want to be a month from now or a year from now. Your vision of yourself must be clearly defined. For example, a good short term goal would be “I want to lose eight pounds in one month” and to further break it down to two pounds per week.

When using this weight loss example: you want to set and write down the steps necessary to lose two pounds a week. Don’t make it too hard on yourself, simple and easy changes or baby steps can make a huge difference over the long-term.


5 easy steps you can add:

I will give up sugar and simple carbs I will avoid foods that are red flags for me( you know the ones) I will ride my bike or walk to work I will use a smaller dinner plate I will wait 15 minutes when I’m done eating before I decide if I need a second helping and if I do I’ll make it more veggies or a salad.

Having a good attitude has a big impact on setting and achieving your weight loss goals. You must be realistic with yourself and think about anything that would hold you back from losing weight. What has held you back in the past?

Realize any behavior challenges you may have ahead of time. It will give you a mindset to attack any issues you may encounter during your path to success. For example, if you love to go out to eat with co- workers, plan your order ahead of time so you eat clean and healthy for that meal. Partner up with one of your friends from the office to be each other’s support.

Leading a healthy lifestyle is for the most part dependent on your time management skills. Most people fail because they often have bad time management skills and lack of persistence. You’ve heard of the phrase “people don’t plan to fail, they fail to plan”. Planning your work outs and meals ahead of time will decide success or failure. You can also plan and cook your meals for the week on a Saturday afternoon thus freeing up more time for yourself later in the week.

Your family should never be left out of your plans. Make them your allies in meal preparation and make fitness a fun family activity. If you need more workout time than the family wants than plan your workouts around family obligations so you don’t set yourself up for failure. Find out what time blocks you can control (such as waking up earlier) and use that time to plan your work outs.

Remember the phrase “all work and no pleasure” well the same goes for a healthy weight management plan. Sometimes you just have to give in, and that’s okay. Now I don’t mean that it’s okay to spend the day with your head in the fridge but having an extra calorie day once a week also tricks the body and can actually kick start your metabolism and it provides the mental break needed to continue with your fitness objectives. So take advantage of life’s pleasures: set up a cheat day once a week to eat whatever you want, within reason.

Create a fitness-to-do list for the day. Write down at least three things you want to do that will help you continue your new fitness lifestyle. This will help you set the tone for the day. In my opinion writing down your fitness objectives provides a mental agreement with yourself to complete those objectives.

Once you learn the basics of setting your fitness goals, you will be able to effectively lead a life of health and fitness. It will be more realistic to you and you’ll soon be an expert on achieving your goal of leading a healthy life filled with a new found energy that you will love.

How about you?  What fitness goals have you set? Do you have an accountability partner?


1 Jacquelyn May 23, 2012 at 3:52 pm

Hi colleagues, good article and pleasant writing style, I truly enjoyed it.
Jacquelyn@weight loss recently posted..weight lossMy Profile

2 Craig March 13, 2012 at 8:38 am

I bookmarked you in my browser Mary. Thank you so much I will be looking for your next posts.

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