You are here

Back to Basics: Establishing Your Goals

A new study shows that setting a goal could be the trick to a transformation. We have the how-to.

The average guy first starts his fitness journey when something makes him realize there needs to be a change. Maybe it's the number on the scale, or the feeling in his lungs after climbing a flight of stairs. Regardless of the reason, out of impulse, he goes and signs up for his his very first gym membership. Equipped with zero guidance and some bad advice from a friend at the gym (who doesn't have a clue about fitness, despite the large biceps), he starts attacking the weights and running feverously on the treadmill.

It's a couple of weeks later and he's lost some weight, gotten a little stronger, but isn't any happier. He's already lost on his journey to fitness, because he never asked himself where it all was leading.  Shortly after, his “new gym membership high,” starts to dissipate and before you know it, he completely stops going.

Fitness is a beautiful thing that can change every aspect of your life in a positive way, but most never take the time to figure out what it is they want out of it. Taking the time to set the goal might make all the difference — especially for men. In a new study from the University of Leicester, men and women were broken down into three sets and asked to take a test. In the first group, no goal was set. In the second, researchers set an easy goal of 10 correct questions. In the third, the goal was a more challenging 15 correct answers. Among women, setting a goal did not make a difference in performance. But for men? The low goal led to a 20% higher score, and the challenging goal a 35% higher score. Men with goals worked faster and tried to answer more questions that challenged them. They even got more easy questions right. 

Read on to learn how to set goals effectively in the gym, so that you can push your limits and start seeing the changes you want. 

Target Muscles: Full Body and Mind

Level: Beginner to Advanced

Frequency: Consistently

Equipment Needed: Notepad and Pen



Want more Men's Fitness?

Sign Up for our newsletters now.