SMART goals for Summer Success

Are you looking to make a positive change to your health and fitness routine before Summer? Set SMART Goals! I find many of my clients come to me at this point in the year as they want to head into the summer months feeling their best. Now that the weather is brighter and the days are longer, it’s the perfect time to set yourself some goals to smash before summer.

Whether your goal is to run your fastest 5K, lift heavier weights in the gym or simply to feel better in your clothes, setting SMART goals is a great way to give yourself a sense of direction and to help motivate yourself to smash them!

Why is Goal Setting Important?
You may wonder what the point of setting a SMART goal is – however, did you know, you’re 82% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down and look at them every day? If that’s not a reason to get a pen and paper out, I don’t know what is! By identifying what it is you want to achieve and focussing on the actionable steps you need to take to get there, you’re setting yourself up with a much greater chance of success!

What are SMART Goals?
Ensuring you set yourself up for success starts with creating the right kind of goals. Rather than wishy-washy, unrealistic goals, take the time to plan realistic, achievable goals towards changing your lifestyle or training habits. If you’re yet to use the SMART goals framework, read on to find out how to set yourself up for the greatest chance of success:

The SMART framework is a simple 5 letter acronym to help you goal-set in any area of your life – not just in health and fitness. SMART goals are goals that are:
1. Specific
2. Measurable
3. Achievable
4. Relevant
5. Time Bound

How do I create a SMART goal?
SMART goals really help you to think about your goals in greater depth, and ensure that they are ultimately achievable. Let’s take the example of achieving a full press up.
Be specific. Key to beginning your goal setting is to ensure you have a really specific idea of what it is you want to achieve. If your goal is vague, how will you know if you’ve got there? For example, having the goal of ‘getting fit’ is far too vague – What do you define as ‘fit’? How do you know when you are ‘fit’? By being specific in your goal setting, you can define a clear path to your success. Taking the example of being able to do a full press up on your toes is a much more specific goal to focus on if you want to improve your overall strength and fitness for example.
Make you goal measurable. By creating a goal that is measurable, you’ll be able to track your progress over time, and know when you have achieved your ultimate goal! Tracking progress over time is a great motivator as you’re clearly able to see improvements as you improve.

Let’s take the full push-up example again – by setting a goal of ‘achieving 20 full push ups’ you can slowly work towards this number each time you do a workout and really see yourself progress.
Other examples of measurable fitness goals are:

  • Running a personal best over a set distance
  • Aiming to hit a new 1 rep max in the gym
  • Achieving a set number of repetitions of an exercise, for example a pull up

Ensure Goals are Achievable
Whilst I like to encourage my clients to dream big with their fitness goals, it is more important that goals are achievable and realistic to you. By setting smaller, more achievable goals you’re more likely to reach them! Using our push-up example, let’s say you’re completely new to fitness. Setting a goal of 50 push-ups in a week is going to be unrealistic. It would be much more achievable to set a goal of doing 5 push-ups on your knees by the end of the second week and set a more challenging goal of 50 press ups on your toes in 6 months’ time.

Make your Goals Relevant
As well as achievable, your goals need to be personal and relevant to you. Consider your work life balance, current fitness levels, heath conditions and time available to train. A new mum will more than likely have less sleep than a mother of a 5-year-old for example, which means considerations around when they could train would need to be thought of. A mother of an older child may be able to commit to training in the gym five evenings a week, whereas a new mum may prefer to work out at home. Although your goals should challenge you, they should also fit into and suit your lifestyle – otherwise it’ll be nearly impossible to reach them!

Make your Goals Time Specific
By giving yourself a realistic start date and a deadline, you’re more likely to stay on track. You can work on your goals by breaking them down into daily actions, acknowledge milestones along the way and ultimately celebrate when you achieve your end goal!

Looking back at our push up example – by setting a goal of 20 full push-ups in 3 months time, you are giving yourself a challenging (but realistic) timeframe to achieve your goal. You’ll be able to plan ahead, scheduling the time you’ll need to allow for training, monitor progress as you go and be motivated by your deadline!

As you can see, SMART goals are an awesome way to motivate yourself to achieve your fitness aims. The key thing to remember is that any goal you set should be YOUR goal and reflect what is meaningful and relevant to you. Remember, everyone is on their own fitness journey with their own unique challenges – comparison is the thief of joy… and motivation!

If you need help in setting your SMART goals, get in touch! From personal one to one training, to group classes, Fit & Healthy Mums has something for everyone.

admin Author