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How To Make SMART Fitness Goals in 2021

Happy New Year!!!

We made it y'all!

If 2020 has taught us anything, it is that we need to start taking our health and fitness seriously. Covid-19 was particularly harsh for those with obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes. These are all preventable and treatable conditions. Making health goals for 2021 is not only smart, but it could save your life.

With every new year comes a new set of resolutions followed by the daunting task of figuring out how to reach all these newly set goals. We get all pumped and excited for a fresh new start at a new you, but do you have what it takes to persevere and dedicate yourself for 365 days to your new goals? The truth is - many of us don't and it's not because we aren't capable of change, it's because we poorly planned or poorly executed our plan to change. So this year- I want everyone to focus on creating the plan on achieving each resolution and I'm gonna show you how.


What is a SMART goal?

SMART is an acronym that encompasses all the characteristics of a goal that is more likely to be achieved.

Be specific — clearly define your goal

  • “I want to get fit” is not specific enough. What do you define as fit? How will you be able to tell when you are fit?

  • “I want to be able to do 20 push-ups on my toes”. Striving for this particular goal means you are working towards getting fitter and stronger. It also provides a focus for your training, which makes it easier to work towards.

Make your goals measurable Some examples of measurable fitness goals are:

  • Achieving a set number of repetitions of an exercise, for example, 12 pull-ups

  • Lifting a specific weight for a new 1RM (one-rep max — the maximum amount you can lift)

  • Running a personal best time over a set distance.

  • When goal setting, if you make your goals measurable it will make it easier to track when you have achieved that goal — as well as work toward it over time.

  • Returning to the push ups example, a measurable fitness goal would be: “I want to be able to do 20 push-ups on my toes”. By specifying how many push ups you want to do, you can then measure your progress by keeping track of how many you can successfully complete over time.

Your goals need to be achievable -- don't bite off more than you can chew

All goals should be challenging; however, it is so important that they are also achievable.

  • For example, setting a goal of doing 20 push ups on your toes in the space of two weeks is probably not an achievable goal when you are a fitness beginner.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t go ahead and set yourself some big goals!

However, you need to break those big goals down into smaller, achievable goals that lead towards the bigger goal.

An achievable version of this goal might be to aim for it in three to six months' time.

You can then work towards this by setting smaller goals (such as doing 5 push-ups on your knees by the end of your second week), before taking new, more challenging steps to achieve the overall goal of doing 20 push ups on your toes.

Your goal needs to be relevant to you

The goals you set should be relevant to your life, and appropriate for your health and lifestyle.

Think about why you want to achieve your goal of doing 20 push ups on your toes — will it improve your quality of life? Perhaps you want to feel stronger and healthier so that you can be more active with your children or reduce fatigue at work — this is a meaningful goal and, as a result, you might be more committed to working toward it.

Similarly, if you decide to commit to five evening workouts at the gym per week when it doesn't suit your lifestyle (for example, if you have a young family or a lot of social commitments), then this might not be a relevant or realistic goal for you.

Be sure to set your goals high but make sure they suit your lifestyle.

Goals should be time-specific.

Setting a start time and deadline for your goal is important. This allows you to work out a plan to achieve the goal by breaking it into daily actions and smaller milestones.

Here’s the push up goal framed as timely: “I want to be able to do 20 push ups on my toes by (insert date)”.

When you set yourself a realistic time-frame, it’s easier to plan and schedule the time you’ll need to dedicate towards achieving your goal, and you’re more likely to be motivated to work towards a specific deadline.

Regularly reassess your progress

With any goal, it’s important to keep track of your progress. You may need to be flexible — it’s possible you’ll have to revise your ambitions if you encounter a fitness setback, or you’ll have to challenge yourself if you reach your goals sooner!

Find a way to track your fitness so that you can see your progress, and maintain motivation as you keep working towards your goal. If you like to have regular rewards and reminders,

DocJay Physical Therapy has a FitSAFE program that includes goal setting, fitness assessment, clinic to gym transition, and reassessment services. Use this goal setting template that I use with my FitSafe participants FOR FREE!

smart goals
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Need help getting your fitness journey started?

Join the FitSAFE program that jumpstarts your fitness journey with goal-setting, fitness assessment, and exercise-readiness testing.

That's all for now y'all!! Have an amazing start to this new year and set some SMART goals.

And if you think that no one loves you,

DocJay does ... blessings :)

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