I talked about setting goals for yourself in one of my first blogs. It was the one where I talked about six pack abs and the reality of what is needed to get them. This is what I had to say about goals, and might I add, its pretty profound:
“You can achieve amazing things, you just have to set attainable and maintainable goals for yourself. Your goals should be specific and personal. “I want a flat stomach,” is too general and hard to quantify. “I want to be able to do 30 sit-ups in one minute,” is better. “I want to lose 50 lbs,” is so overwhelming! How about, “I want to lose 10 lbs in 6 weeks, 25 lbs in 6 months, and 50 lbs in a year.” It’s all about setting goals that aren’t too easy, but not completely out of reach. Making your goals personal makes them easy to achieve as well. For example, “I want to run as fast as so and so,” makes it so that you’re always going to compare yourself to that person. What if you are never as fast as her? Are you a failure? No! A better goal would be, “I can run a mile in this amount of time right now, but in 2 months, I want to run it 10 seconds faster.” Getting healthy and fit isn’t about coveting what the girl next to you has, its about wanting what’s good for you. Its about making goals for yourself that you can be proud of. Its about being happy with who you are and just making that fantastic person even better!”
I think setting goals is an incredibly important part of the journey to get healthy, so I just wanted to add some things to what I said before.
Can we talk about the scale? If you are going to make yourself a slave to this little box with numbers, make sure you pick a weight that is maintainable for your lifestyle. If getting to that weight causes you to be in the gym for hours on hours when you don’t have that kind of time, or keeps you from consuming at least 1200 calories a day, then it is not maintainable!! Being happy at the same time as being healthy is something I strongly believe in, and if you’re trying that hard to get to some arbitrary number, you’re probably not happy. And if that number is what you weighed in high school…well, give it up now, honey. We all remember a time, whether it was high school or college or some other point in our lives, when we weighed next to nothing. You are a different person now. A different person with a different metabolism, lifestyle, and nutrition needs. We could eat anything we wanted to back then with hardly any consequences. I mean, every day during my sophomore year of high school, I ate a quarter pounder from McDonald’s. Then, I went and practiced basketball for three hours, so my weight stayed the same. (But who knows what it did to my heart, and not to mention it makes me want to throw up talking about it now.) Point being, choose a healthy weight, not some made up number that you think will make you happy.
If you don’t need to watch the scale, choose another way of measuring your success. Why don’t you pay attention to how your clothes are fitting? Are they getting looser? Are they falling off? Odds are you’re losing weight and you don’t have to chain yourself to a box to know it! Can you run farther than you could last week? Can you do more push-ups than you could before? Can you run around with your kids without getting winded? Fantastic! Those are the types of goals I give myself and the types of goals I recommend to my clients.