With spring finally here you might be feeling like shedding some of that excess winter weight. Spring is a time of new beginnings and is the perfect time to kickstart a new fitness regime. As always, 30 Day Fitness has your back. We have some fabulous fitness challenges to kickstart your new exercise habit. Read on to discover our top three tips to get started and stick with your new workout routine.
Your goal depends on your current level of fitness, and the specific results you want to achieve. You might want to lose weight, increase stamina, build muscle mass, or tone up for summer. For maximum efficacy, always ensure goals follow the SMART acronym; they should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-based and Timed. Let's take weight loss as an example. A SMART weight loss goal would go like this:
Specific - I want to lose 10lbs in the next ten weeks. It's no good just saying 'I want to lose weight.' How will you know when you have achieved your goal? It will also be near impossible to stay on track if you aren't specific with what you want to achieve.
Measurable - The measurable in this goal is the lbs. By choosing something measurable, you can track your progress. Another measurable I would include here are the activities I will do to move toward my goal. For a 1lb per week weight loss, I will exercise 5 times a week for at least 30 minutes each session. I now have a specific measured goal and process.
Achievable - This one is important. This goal of 10lbs weight loss is achievable providing I give myself enough time. The 1lb per week weight loss goal is a healthy and achievable goal. It would not be achievable or healthy for me to try and lose 10lbs in the next ten days.
Results-based - This goal focuses on the result of losing 10lbs. Again, if I had a vague weight loss aim, I would not have a specific outcome to aim for. It also helps to consider why you want to get that result. What will it mean to your lifestyle, confidence, health, etc.? What will the effects be if you don't accomplish your goal? This information helps to keep you motivated.
Timed - I have decided that I will achieve my 10lbs weight loss goal in ten weeks. This is the timeframe I have given myself. I then break it down into trackable segments. In this example, I will lose 1lb a week. I can write this in my calendar or diary and give myself a gold star when I achieve the weekly goal. This way, it is easier for me to stay on track, and the end goal doesn't seem as daunting because I have broken it down into smaller, extremely achievable goals.
To achieve any goal, you need to be consistent. If you have set your goal using the process outlined above, you should have a clear roadmap of what you want to achieve, by when, how you will do it, and how you will know that you have completed it. In the example, I pledged to lose 10lbs in ten weeks by exercising five times a week for at least 30 minutes each session. All I need to do is follow this formula and be consistent with my efforts. Remember the inspirational quote: "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." Just keep moving forward one step at a time, and you will get the results you desire.
The third tip is to get accountable. It has been shown that you are twice as likely to achieve your goal if you share it with a friend. Accountability is vital because when you share your goal with someone, you are putting it out into the universe, and you are giving it life. Your goal will become more powerful. Accountability gives you a stronger sense of responsibility. As humans, we sometimes don't mind letting ourselves down, but we don't like letting other people down. Ask someone you trust to check in on you regularly to ensure that you are staying on track with your fitness challenge.
Spring is a great time to set goals and start a new fitness challenge. Ensure that your goals follow the SMART process, be consistent with your daily actions, and enlist the support of a trusted friend to keep you accountable. There's nothing that can stop you now!
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