This is for those that want to break through to the next level! Goals are the backbone of any successful effort, be it your career, your education, financial goals, martial arts training and physical well being like losing weight and improving your overall fitness. Most people know that they have to set goals but they may not know how to or they may lack the two most important things to do so; motivation and self- confidence. Today I am going to share with you the surefire strategy that I use weekly to SMASH through and CRUSH my goals regularly. The secret sauce to successfully achieving your goals is using what’s called the S.M.A.R.T system– Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely. Let’s break this down further for you using the example of Carl and his sparring sessions. Currently my friend Carl can spar for three full five-minute rounds without taking a break. He wants to increase the amount of rounds he can spar before his next big fight, which is in 8 weeks. BE SPECIFIC A specific goal has a much greater chance of being accomplished than a general goal. Specifics help us to focus our efforts and clearly define what we are going to do. When you are starting on a journey to achieve a goal you need to commit to it. Commit by writing it down on a on paper. To make this more straightforward you want to specify the What, Why and How’s of what you want to happen: • WHAT are you going to do? Use action words such as direct, organize, coordinate, lead, develop, plan, build etc. • WHY is this important to do at this time? What do you want to ultimately accomplish? HOW are you going to do it? (By…) EXAMPLE: Using our sparring scenario. A general goal for Carl would be I want to increase the number of round I can spar without resting. A more specific goal would be, I want to increase the number of rounds I can spar without resting from 4 to 8 rounds by going to sparring class 2x per week and using Funk’s metabolic workouts 3 days a week to help improve my overall conditioning. MEASURABLE Creating concrete ways to measure your progress towards reaching your goals are key. If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. During your process there are usually several short-term or small measurements that can be tracked on your way to your goal. Choose a goal in which you can measure your progress and see change. How will you see when you reach your goal? Be specific! When you measure your progress, you stay on track, reach your target dates, and experience the exhilaration of achievement that spurs you on to continued effort required to reach your goals. EXAMPLE: Carl will measure his progress my constantly challenging himself to add an extra round in each week and gauge where he is at in journey. He wants to last 6 sparring rounds straight, so he can measure this by testing his conditioning each week. ACHIEVABLE/ATTAINABLE Goals you set which are way too far out of your reach, you probably won’t commit to doing. You may have great intentions, but subconsciously you will remind yourself that it’s too much and you will stop from even giving it your best try. When you identify the goals that are important, you will develop attitudes, abilities and skills to reach them. You can attain most any goal you set when you plan your steps wisely and establish a time frame that allows you to carry out those steps. EXAMPLE: Carl can break down his big goal of increasing his sparring to 8 rounds by aiming for a 2 round improvement by week 4. He knows that it’s achievable and when he sets the goal to get to 6 in the first 4 weeks and achieves that, aiming for another 2 rounds will keep you motivated with the feeling of success. BE REALISTIC Your goal must represent an objective that you are both willing and able to work at. A high realistic goal is easier to reach than a low one because the low goal has low motivation. A goal should be both high and realistic. You are the only one who can decide just how high your goal should be. But be sure that every goal represents substantial progress and you have the passion to complete it. EXAMPLE: Carl could have set his goal at increasing to one more round of sparring in 8 weeks, but that would be too low, motivational and defeat the purpose fo getting better and setting high standards. BY setting it to 4 more rounds, even if Carl gets 3 more rounds and is able to spar for 7 rounds non-stop, that is still a substantial improvement from his current 4 round pace and the 5 rounds that he would have had if he set a low goal! TIMELY Setting a timeline for a goal is the probably the most important step in the S.M.A.R.T. system. IF you don’t set a time, then your commitment is too vague, there’s no urgency and you will most likely end up quitting. Putting and exact end point on your goals gives you a clear target to work towards. EXAMPLE: Carl can finish off this goal setting process by setting his target date as the sparring session that happens 8 weeks from today. Everyone will benefit from goals and objectives if they are SMART. SMART, is the instrument to apply in setting your goals and objectives.
GOAL SETTING – 4 STEPS TO REACHING SUCCESS STARTS HERE Every person in life has a unique set of goals, and most people measure their success by their ability to see these goals through to completion. Until the goal is defined, a person has no destination. What are the fitness and health goals you’ve set for yourself in 2013? Goals are the backbone of any successful effort – that includes losing weight and improving your fitness. I have touched on goal setting in the past and I think it is safe to say that most people know that they have to set goals but that are not quite sure how to start, what to do and what type of goals are needed for success Today, I am going to show you how to make the proper goals to help you succeed in 2013 1. FIND YOUR “WHY” Goals need to be specific. When you are starting on a fat/weight loss journey or want to put on some muscle, you need a goal that you will commit to. Commit by writing down your goals on paper. Create a strong desire to committing the goal by writing down all the reasons that you want to achieve it – “THE WHY” It’s probably safe to say that you have a goal to get in shape or more specifically, to improve their body composition, fitness level and overall health. But that’s not specific enough. It can be easy to lose sight of our goals if we have no sense of purpose driving us forward. Stating that you want to lose weight, get fit and be healthier is one thing, but finding a specific goal (or goals) to shoot for is very important. That is why I recommend always taking that extra moment to ask yourself: “Why am I doing this?” “Why do I want this?” etc. How do you know where you will end up if you don’t know where you are going and how you will get there? Think about what you want to achieve, how you are going to achieve it, and WHY you want this so badly. When you hit rough patches along the way, you will refer to your “WHY” to remind you of all the reasons that you have to stay fit and get healthy. Here is what asking “WHY?” does: Creates a Definition for Success If you are going to put time and energy into something, you need to have a purpose. Without a defined sense of what it means to be successful, people often lose motivation to continue. When you ask why something is important to you, your answer creates the criteria by which you judge success. For example, let’s say you come up with a goal: “I want to lose 5 pounds in a month.” By asking yourself why this goal is important to you, you can create a clearly defined reason for pursuing it. Whatever your answer is (to look better, to drop a dress size in time for vacation in Maui, etc.) will be something you can turn to when you question why you’re working so hard in the gym. Narrows Focus and Gathers Resources Imagine you give yourself the following goal: “I will work out 3 days this week for half an hour.” By asking why you are doing this action, you can begin to think about all of the resources that you must put into achieving it. Perhaps the answer is that you want to work out, but don’t have much time. Now that you have your answer to “why,” you know that time is a precious resource. As such, you can begin to manage your time by organizing it in such a way that you give yourself time to accomplish this goal. Motivates Lastly, understanding why you’re doing what you’re doing is a great way to stay motivated. Let’s say you have the following action step in place: “Drink a glass of water instead of a can of soda whenever you crave soda.” Over the course of a week, you may know what action you’re supposed to be taking, but without asking yourself “why” you are taking that action, you could very well lose motivation to do it. Instead, when you ask “why,” you can create a list of all the reasons you should skip that can of soda: “I’m trying to lose 10 pounds… The sugar in soda will undermine my other diet efforts… I need to stay hydrated for my workout… and so on.” Having something to lean on when bad habits and doubt start to creep in can be the difference between being motivated and successful or being apathetic and unsuccessful. Your “WHY” keeps you going and gives you something to focus on. Now go find your “WHY” and write it down. Make sure you keep it visual so you can look at it every day. 2. PUT A TIMELINE TO YOUR GOALS When you develop goal, give it a timeline that is measurable and definite. Doing a fitness program like my 4 Week Spartan Training Program makes this easy, as your timeline is automatically 4 weeks. This means that no matter what during the next four weeks you will stay focused on changing your habit and reaching success. When I created the program I knew that four weeks is a short enough time that you can stay focused but it’s enough to get measureable changes and see visible results You can do the same thing…you can dedicate yourself to focusing on your health for four weeks of the Spartan Training program or any other fitness program you want to start. These weeks during a program can make an incredible difference in your life when you focus on changing destructive behaviours in the past. It’s your turn to write down the timeline so that you can reach the overall goal you have set for yourself. 3. SET SMALLER “ABE” GOALS One strategy I learned in the past, when I have successfully reached my own goals is to use the “ABE” principle for setting smaller goals for fitness and fat loss. These are habits that I follow to help guide me to success. The 3 main types are: Attitude Goals, Behavioral Goals and Emotional Goals. Let’s take a look at each one and how you should apply these to your overall fitness and health goals. ATTITUDE GOALS Attitude goals are based on the type of mental and emotional changes that you want to see in your life. For example, I WANT TO STICK TO A BODYWEIGHT WORKOUT PROGRAM FOR 4 WEEKS WITHOUT GIVING UP. Others may be, understanding you have an opportunity to change your life or accept that you may slip up on the way and that you will not feel guilty about it. BEHAVIOURAL GOALS Behavioral goals are behaviours that you have identified as having been obstacles to your success in the past and that you will change within the time frame you have set. By remembering these goals on a day to day basis, you can start overcoming the negative behaviours and replace them with positive ones. These types of goals will help support you in your fat loss and fitness efforts. For example DURING THE FITNESS PROGRAM, I WILL DRINK AT LEAST 3L OF WATER EVERY DAY. Others may be I will get rid of the takeout food, chocolate and alcohol for the length of the program. EMOTIONAL GOALS Finally, your emotional goals help you touch on the feelings and experiences that you want to have during your fat loss journey. Emotional goals are important because fat loss and fitness are just as much, if not more, about how you feel as they are about what you weight. For example, I WANT TO FEEL CONFIDENT ABOUT EATING WHEN GOING OUT IN SOCIAL SITUATIONS SO I DON’T LOSE CONTROL. Others may be I want to feel excited when buying new clothes for my new body. When you set smaller “ABE” goals: Attitude goals, Behavioral goals and Emotional goals, you’ll be more likely to stay motivated and committed. These goals cover the spectrum of the types of mental, physical and emotional challenges you’ll need to overcome in order to get in shape and stay in shape, long term. Now sit back and set some “ABE” goals, habits and a timeline for yourself/. Make sure you write them down 4. ENVISION YOUR GOAL AND COMMITMENT Envision achieving your goals and stay committed. See yourself effortlessly by-passing hurdles along the way • Create a vision of commitment • Create a visual treasure map of what your commitment looks like • Cut out words and pictures that motivate you towards your goal and pin them up • Grab a picture of the body you want to look like. You should literally be able to take your head and put it on your target body. In other words, I would not cut out Brad Pitt’s body from Fight Club…he’s white, I am black, would never work –LOL. Be realistic! Your goal is therefore your target. Your goal keeps you going and gives you something to focus on. Before you start your journey, you need to have a target in mind and committed to paper. Your target will represent how you want to feel, look and act at the end of this journey. Make a plan, and have a vision. Once you have reached these goals, reward yourself and move on to the next challenge and goal. GOOD LUCK Your Friend and Coach Funk Roberts