Why you should Focus on Small Goals
Fitness success is a result of daily habits that add up over time. Getting and staying healthy may require motivation, but if you feel like this is a weak spot for you, focus on small goals instead of the end results. Being accountable for your actions is much easier when you change your perspective to smaller goals that are more easily attainable.
What are Small Goals?
Small goals are also known as short-term goals and are the stepping stones that lead us to our large or ultimate goals. For example, if your goal is to run a marathon but you have never run a race, your goal will take time to accomplish. Waiting too long to see your goal come true can cause frustration and make you feel like giving up. This is where small goals come in.
Small goals are those that can be accomplished in a week or two. They help break down the larger goal into achievable pieces. For example, the goal of running a marathon will feel more attainable if you set goals to accomplish each week. These small goals increase your current training time each week or improve your diet.
Smaller Goals, Quicker Results
Smaller goals used to reach your ultimate goal will provide results sooner. If you want to run a marathon, you first have to be able to run a block. If you want to lose 50 pounds, first lose five. And if your goal is to simply be fit, use a fitness app to complete a fitness challenge twice a week and keep going.
These are small goals that you can achieve within a couple of weeks and are easier to visualize in your foreseeable future. Add to these short-term goals every week or two and you have created your strategy for success! Each success leads to improved healthy habits and motivation so you can move forward from there.
Procrastination affects everyone at some time or another and can be the biggest inhibitor to reaching fitness goals. Procrastination is often the result of feeling overwhelmed or defeated before a plan is even put into action. But setting small, specific goals can reduce procrastination because achieving small goals is easier than larger ones.
For example, exercising for 10 minutes might feel a lot more doable for busy people than exercising for 60 minutes, so begin with 10 if you need to. Overhauling one’s diet might seem costly or confusing, so instead, focus on one thing at a time like avoiding fast food and replacing it with self-prepared meals. Success will come when you know your limitations and work within them, and you will slowly expand your borders and move beyond.
Because short-term goals can be realized within a week or two, it is easier to stay focused on them because they don’t seem out of reach. Of course, chances are you won’t be focused on exercise or diet while working or tending to other daily commitments. But, when it comes to your health and fitness, short-term goals are easier to focus on because you know results are just around the corner.
If you have created your plan with a list of small goals, you know what to do and when, making your plan easier to follow. So, begin now to create a series of clear, short-term targets for yourself, so they can be easily incorporated into your daily life, which sets you up for success.
Set SMART Small Goals
SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. When you set goals, consider each of these aspects. Is the goal specific? For example, losing 50 pounds is abstract because you must take steps that help you lose weight. But walking every day for 10 minutes is very specific because you know exactly what needs to be done every day. If you create a schedule, you’ll even know when it should be done.
Goals should be measurable. Examples of measurable goals include walking for 10 minutes, consuming zero desserts or consuming 80 grams of protein in a day. Goals should be attainable, which also means know your limitations. Writing out your schedule and adding in your meal plans and exercise times will help you visually see if your goals are realistic and thus attainable.
Realistic goals are those that fit comfortably into your daily schedule and you know you can do them, while timely goals are those that have an end. For example, walking 10 minutes every day for one week is a timely goal.
Accomplishment is a Benefit of Reaching Goals
Small or short-term goals are easier to achieve and reaching them provides a sense of accomplishment, which can improve your motivation to keep going. It’s okay if you set the same goals every week, such as walking five days for 20 minutes each day. When you are comfortable, add on a few minutes to each walk as your fitness level increases. When you achieve your goals week after week, you will feel and see the results of your hard work.
Accountability is Essential
Taking responsibility for your actions is also known as accountability and is essential for success. It means you must stop making excuses and begin taking care of yourself today, but it may not be as easy as it sounds in today’s busy world.
Finding a group of friends or like-minded people is a great way to get motivated and hold yourself accountable for your fitness. Sharing your small goals is an easier way to ensure success and prove to yourself that you can do what you set your mind to.
Yes.Fit is a great app to help you reach small goals. Choose from a variety of races that you can walk, run or jog to complete, and build on your accomplishments each week. Fitness challenges are a great way to measure your success, and you will be connected to a social network of other folks who are looking for the same thing, fitness, fun and maybe even friendship!