How to create achievable fitness goals

Setting goals for the year can be a great way to focus yourself for big things. This method can be used for any kind of goal setting but I’m focussing on fitness today because I’m looking ahead to March when I’m going skiing for the first time ever.

I really struggled with skiing towards the end of last year. I just couldn’t get the hang of sharp turns on the dry slope. Thankfully, when I got on snow at Snozone in Milton Keynes, things just clicked. Now that I don’t have to worry too much about technique, I need to focus on being the fittest I can possibly be. I have various goals around weight loss, leg strength and getting my eating habits under control.

My goals

  • Lose 14lbs before my ski trip in March
  • Hit the gym three times a week
  • Get through the C25K program (again) – This means running three times per week
  • Limit takeaways to just one per month

Here are some tips for setting your own goals for the first part of this year.

Look back on last year

What goals did you set at the start of last year and how did you do? Look at the goals you absolutely smashed and try to recreate them, what helped you find success? Similarly, with the goals you didn’t quite hit, can you pinpoint why?

Sit down and go through your 2017 goals one-by-one and look at what led to the success or failure of each.

For those you failed, were they just too ambitious? Perhaps you got almost all the way there but didn’t quite reach that target. This can signal that you need to dial it back a bit and focus on what’s achievable.

What do you want to achieve?

It might be to feel confident in some gorgeous swimwear (like these wonderfully patterned swimsuits from Speedo!), or it might be to hike a mountain. Think about what it is you want to achieve generally in 2018.

For me, I want to be able to ski comfortably, get up when I fall over and have the stamina to spend all day on the slopes.

How do you get there?

Think about what it is you want to achieve, what are the steps that will get you there? Feeling confident in swimwear might be about building muscle, getting a tan or finding the perfect bikini. Hiking a mountain is about stamina and strength so you’d need to think about doing some hill walking, building stamina through regular runs, or building muscle to protect your joints.

For skiing, I’m going to increase stamina with running and my strength work in the gym will contribute to that. Losing a little fat will also make it easier for me to get up and down plus there will be less to heft about, again contributing to stamina.

How can you measure it?

Now that you have some goals, you need to think about measuring them as this will help you to track progress and stay focussed. Going to the gym three times a week is easy to track but what if you want to build muscle or lose fat? Don’t just rely on the scales for these goals, get your body fat checked and take regular measurements too.

What are your fitness goals for 2018?

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