There I was, sitting in the middle of a full lecture hall, feeling depressed and wondering how I got to this point. My relationship with my high school girlfriend was over, I put on an extra 30 pounds of body fat, and I absolutely hated the way I looked. I was constantly skipping my workouts, eating things I shouldn’t be eating, and struggling to find the motivation to get my butt off the couch and make a change.
It was my sophomore year in college and I was sitting in one of my Exercise Science lectures. I looked to my left…and I looked to my right…and I saw a few guys who were in great shape sitting nearby. Ripped arms, broad shoulders, veins like snakes on their forearms…how did they do it? Why can’t I look like that? For some reason, my attention quickly returned back to the professor at the front of the class who was teaching us about SMART goals. A tool to help you set specific goals for what you want to accomplish.
And that’s when it hit me…
What ARE my goals? Do I even HAVE any specific goals? I know I can’t stand this gut that I’ve recently developed. I’ve lost the definition in my arms that I once had in high school football. I knew I wanted to change my body and my health. I knew HOW to do it, but I simply wasn’t taking any action. I never set a specific goal for myself and certainly didn’t have a game-plan. That’s when I learned about SMART Goals from my professor.
Watch the video below to learn more about SMART Goals.
(Yes the news anchor said my name wrong….twice.)
Specific – Don’t just say I want to lose weight. Pick a number. Make it real. I want to lose 40 lbs.
Measurable – Choose a goal that you can actually measure. Some people say “I want to feel better”. You can’t really measure that. Choose something that can be easily measured.
Attainable – Is the goal realistic? Losing 100lbs in 2 months or adding 10lbs of muscle in a month are not realistic goals. Set yourself up for success by setting an attainable goal.
Relevant – Is the goal relevant? Think about the reason behind this goal and make sure it matches what you really want.
Time specific – When would you like to achieve this goal? Pick a specific date and hold yourself accountable to it.
A great example of a SMART Goal is…
I will lose 10lbs by April 1st (let’s say it’s 8 weeks away).
It’s specific (10lbs). It’s measurable (pounds). It’s attainable (1-2lbs of weight loss per week is considered healthy). It’s relevant (I want to look and feel better). And it has a deadline (April 1st, 8 weeks away).
Once you determine your SMART Goal, then you can identify the actions or behaviors that will help you to reach that goal. (go to the gym at least 3 days/week, meal prep every weekend, etc.)
In the end, I don’t believe that SMART Goals are a magical solution that will automatically get you the results that you’re after. I’m saying that clearly defining your goals and developing a game-plan can make all the difference.
What to do now:
- Create your very own SMART Goal that you want to accomplish during 2017.
- Then identify at least 2 behaviors that will help you make that goal a reality.
- Write it down and post it somewhere where you will see it constantly. Use it as a powerful motivator every day.
Let’s make 2017 the best year yet!
Yours in health,