Writing Goals that Yield Results

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By now, I hope you’ve realized that this is about being fit, not worrying about being fat.  In case you still don’t believe me.  Listen to Steven.


Steven Blair is a renowned exercise researcher at the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina.  His research shows that excess weight is not “the enemy.”  Not getting enough exercise and being cardiovascular unfit are much greater contributors to poor health than any extra poundage can be.  Blair stands firmly by his research that fit, fat people outlive thin, unfit people.  Get the full article HERE




When you understand that genetics cause our bodies to look different, just like we all are different heights, with different shoe sizes, hair, eye and skin colors and that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes and that just because someone is thin, does not mean they are fit, you can relax about exercising to lose weight, fretting over how much you did and didn’t see “results”, and you will keep it up.


Sometimes we need something to work toward that will get us excited about getting active.  Since we have dispelled the myth that you have to do a particular type of exercise for a specific amount of time to reap the benefits (see Steven’s article), let’s talk goals.


Out with the weight loss goals, in with the fitness goals.


I am of the belief that when you write a goal, it should excite and scare you a bit.  It should stretch what you believe is possible for you.  It should challenge you.  There change occurs.  Not only in your physical capabilities, but in your mind.  What would it mean for you to be able to run a 5 or 10K without stopping? How about a half or full marathon, even if you do it walk-run style?  My eyes pop open when I think about being able to swim a mile, say what?! Or bench-pressing your weight?  Now those might be too much of a stretch right now, if you have not worked out in a while, but there are always stepping stones.


Goal Setting 101:

If you have set a goal before and missed the mark, you may have been missing a key element in goal-setting.

Let me break it down for you using the SMART goals format.


Specific What do you want to achieve? Sometimes it is also important to include where.

Measurable How are you going to do it? Break down the steps or name the tool or technique(s).  What obstacles are in your way and what strategies will you use to overcome them?

Attainable Is this an achievable goal?  Here is where the thought-work comes in.  If you do not clean up your thoughts around a goal, you will find yourself procrastinating and/or self-sabotaging, so I suggest you write the goal, the write all of your thoughts about the goal and see which of your thoughts need adjustment.

Realistic Make no judgments around your goals, but ask yourself why do I want this?  Make sure your why lights you up and add it to the goal sheet, so when you are feeling less-than-motivated, you can call on these feelings to spur you in to action

Time-based. When do you plan to achieve this goal?  A goal without a timeline is just a dream -Robert Herjavec



Getting past the barriers.

Goal: I will be able to do 10 full pushups by 2/1/14

Goal: I will be able to run one mile without stopping by 2/1/14


Now write all of the excuses/reasons why you think your goal might not happen.

Example: I can’t even do one full push up right now

Example: I can’t walk a mile without getting out of breath right now


For each excuse/reason you have for not completing your goals, document a plan or strategy to overcome it.

I will do as many knee push-ups as I can every morning before my shower.

I will get the couch to 5K program and take my dog for a walk everyday while I work on the program



Write 1-3 fitness (not weight loss) goals that you are committed to achieving. List the goal in SMART format, your excuses/reasons for why you think your goal might not happen, list your strategies to overcome those obstacles:




Get a 3×5 card and write your goal (s) and your why and put them somewhere where you can see them daily.


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