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Back to Basics: Establishing Your Goals

Revisit the basic steps to starting a workout plan and take your fitness to new heights.

1. Start Now

You don’t need to wait until New Year's Eve, when you’re sipping champagne, listening to 1999 by Prince, and picking pieces of confetti out of your hair to set goals. Grab your yellow notepad and a pen and start now….no, not Monday, NOW.

2. Define What You Want

Don't just say, “I want to lose weight” or “I want more muscle mass.” This is the beauty in fitness; it doesn’t need to end with achieving massive biceps. Once that box is checked, move on and start conquering more!

3. Goals Must Be M.A.T.

Measureable: You need to be able to measure it somehow. Whether that means weighing yourself, testing your body fat, or doing some kind of assessment/evaluation. Keep a journal as a record of everything you’re doing to achieve your goal (e.g. workouts, diet, goals). It may sound tedious or difficult, but the path to success should be both fun and challenging at times, and you need a way to measure that success as you achieve it.

Achievable: Set realistic goals for yourself. If you’re 40 and have a beer belly, you probably will never be the starting QB for the Dallas Cowboys, but you may eventually make a better training partner for your kid so maybe he can be one day.

Timed: Goals are dreams with a deadline. Set a specific and realistic time to hit them.

4. Acknowledge the Hurdles:

We all have them. Think of the last 3 excuses you had for not working out (e.g. too tired, not enough time in the day, too sore).

Answer these questions:

  1. What are your weaknesses?
  2. Why have you not already achieved the goal you seek?
  3. What are the personal, professional and circumstantial barriers that have gotten in the way?
  4. How can your time management be more effective?

*Your goals in fitness will come true only if you work on addressing these issues first. The more paper you used to answer these questions the harder it is going to be to achieve success.

5. Make Sacrifices

What can you do day to day to achieve these goals and what are you willing to give up right now?

6. Make Your Goal Public

Not only will this hold you accountable, it will also help you find out who really does want you to succeed. People who want to see you succeed will be encouraging and optimistic. The doubters will fill you with negative energy ("You’ll never look like that.") Once you identify them, try your best to avoid them, at least until you have your new body and can rub it in their faces.

7. Take Action, Every Day

What is the first step that you can make right now to put you on your path toward achievement? It is the small daily steps that will create the momentum needed to ignite the drive in your mind and body.

If you take the time to answer these questions and stay true to these tips, you will start to see success on your fitness journey, and maybe in the other aspects of your life as well. At our Training for Warriors locations, we focus on pulling the best out of our clients. What's your best? This is the first series out of six where I’m simplifying things in fitness and bringing it back to basics leading to a better all-around you.

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