The benefits of living an active and healthy lifestyle are well documented (just have a read of our blogs 😊) but if you’re reading this and want to start on your health journey it can be wise set yourself some health and fitness goals.
One of the key things when setting goals is to write them down. No matter how big or small your goal, it will require planning and ensuring they are SMART goals.
What do we mean by SMART goals?
SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound.
- Specific. For your goal to be specific you can’t just say ‘I want to get fit’ or ‘I want to lose weight’. Be explicit. Explain how much weight you want to lose and what you mean by ‘fit’.
- Measurable. This means it needs to be measured to determine if it was a success. For example, a goal might be to run a 10km. That’s great. You can measure this.
- Achievable. This is our reality check. Is it realistic? There’s no point setting a goal that, for the foreseeable future is not-achievable due to your current situation / lifestyle.
- Relevant. Your goal must mean something and be important to you. Don’t set the same goal as friends or family. Ensure it’s personal and relevant to you.
- Time bound. When will you achieve this goal? Set yourself a date to aim for. Maybe you have a special occasion, holiday or event you’re aiming for.
Examples of some SMART goals might be:
- I will walk for 30 minutes every day this week
- I will swap my usual fizzy and sugary drinks for water for the next 30 days
- I will go swimming for 40 minutes three days this week
- I will prepare my own healthy lunch Monday – Friday for the rest of the month instead of visiting the sandwich van.
Think about the other things / support mechanisms do you need to help you achieve your goals? Maybe you need a workout programme, a fitness tracker, personal trainer or just a new pair of trainers!
When planning your goals and your exercise programme, choose exercises and activities that you know you will enjoy. Your goals will be harder to achieve if you’re not excited or inspired by what you’re doing, and don’t be afraid to adapt and change the plan. If you just don’t fancy a run after work or you can’t face the gym swap it for something that you’ll enjoy such as swim or a yoga class. The willingness to be flexible is the most realistic fitness goal worth making.
We always advise that you check with your health-care provider or GP before beginning an exercise program for the first time or if you have been away from fitness programs for a while, or if you have any health issues.
Good luck and we look forward to hearing about your fitness goals and achievements on our social media networks – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.