Last week we looked at seven steps to getting started. Over the next few weeks, I want to take a look at some things that can help you keep your mojo going.
The first thing I want to talk about is having a real goal in mind. Make it specific and measureable if possible. This means you have to have a target to focus on. If it’s pretty vague, you’ll probably get vague results. If it’s pretty direct, like you’re going to lose 15 pounds by the start of summer, then you have a better chance of achieving it.
It also helps if you absolutely, positively, just have to do it! It’s got to almost kill you if for some reason you don’t do it. When failure is not an option, you have no choice but to succeed.
Knowing what you’re aiming at helps you focus so you can hit what you’re aiming at. Imagine grabbing a bat and just going out, chopping wildly at the air, hoping a baseball will fly by so you can hit it!
Write down your goal. If you’ve written it down, it’s much more likely that you’ll get it done. This applies to simple, daily tasks, short-term goals, and even longer term goals that might take up to six months to a year, or more.
Once you have your main goal, see if you can break it down into several smaller, more manageable bite size goals. Make a list of objectives to hit along the way. If the main goal is to lose 15 lbs over the next three weeks, then that means each week you need to lose 5 lbs.
The next step is figuring out how you’re going to do it this week. Next week doesn’t matter if you don’t lose the 5 lbs this week. What’s it going to take to make that happen? What actions do you need to take each day to make this a realistic proposition?
If you need some help making new habits, it might be helpful to have a checklist that you look at every day. It could be as simple as something like this:
Morning walk (15-20 min) ____
Breakfast (400 cal) ____
Lunch (400 cal) ____
Snack (150 cal) ____
Evening workout (45 min) ____
Supper (400 cal) ____
Snack (150 cal) ____
4-5 bottles of water/day ____
Good self-talk today ____
Read something to help ____
Encourage someone else ____
At the start of each day, take a look at your objectives. Even experienced pilots still perform pre-flight checklists—they don’t want to miss anything that might be important.
At the end of the day, take another look at it. Did you get everything done? Did anything slip through the cracks? At some point, those things on your list will become much more automatic, but for awhile, it might help you to check things off.
Each week, measure your progress. If you did enough work, you’ll hit your goal. If you didn’t, you won’t. Be honest either way. If you made it, that’s awesome. Give yourself some love. If you didn’t, what do you need to do to turn it around? Make a decision to do better next week, and then do it!
Next week, we’ll look at some other strategies to help you get what you want. Until then, feel free to contact me through Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/tomdolanfitness if you have any questions or comments.