How to Actually Reach Your Fitness Goals Part Two: Your Reality

 

What to expect

  •  1500 words

  •  5 minute read time

  •  Learn questions to ask about yourself before setting a goal

  •  Learn why it’s important to find our strengths and weaknesses before setting a fitness goal.

 

If you haven’t already, I highly suggest you read part one of this series. You can read it here.

 

Did you know that less than 10 % of  people with new years resolutions ever achieve their goals?

As a personal trainer this inspired me to actually write. In doing so I hope these steps, if implemented can actually help you to finally lose that weight and keep it off..

Part one was all about finding out your most important goal and why it’s so important.

Part two is about stepping back and discovering exactly where you are in relation to your goal.

 

Football and Fitness goals

To start , lets compare setting a fitness goal with a football team starting a new season. At the end of July, fresh from Summer holidays, a team might arrive for pre season.

Dreams of wanting to win the league (the goal) on the top of every players mind. Firstly, the manager will want to see what the ability is in pre season or early season.

 

Take a manager like Jose Mourinho, at the start of the season he would see what strengths and weaknesses his squad have.

He might notice the team needs five new players if they are to challenge for a league.

 

In carrying out a full evaluation, correct steps can be taken to ensure the squad have a realistic chance of reaching goals.

If you know what’s both stopping and supporting you towards your goals, you can develop a strategy and action plan that will actually work for you.

 

Self Evaluation

 

How silly would it be for a team new to a league, selling all their players, losing their manager and not having a huge budget, to all of a sudden set a grand master plan that they want to win every trophy in sight?

What sort of team are you?

For some reason people think fitness goals are different. When a new year comes, we tell ourselves no more junk food ever, going to kill myself in the gym for the rest of my life and giving up alcohol forever.

This isn’t you of course ;-) A lot of people think they have the ability of a Manchester United or City. When in reality they are more like a Watford.

 

 

Before starting any fitness goal it’s important you discover what makes you tick. 

 

It’s important to question exactly how close to your goal you really are.

To dig deep and find where you excel and where you just plain stink. If you truly know what’s best then, you can plan accordingly.

 

Like the way Jose Mourinho may need to change his playing style.

Or he may need to buy new players in order to challenge.

Or he might need to change goals after an initial evaluation.

By digging deep you can see what works and what doesn’t.

 

Applied to fitness, If you know willpower is your weakness, you can decide to get a personal trainer to help you develop good habits.

If work and time are the main issue, working on life management and scheduling could be the solution.

 

 

Without knowing your strengths or your limitations, you are doomed to fail.

 

 

Important Questions to ask yourself

You need to ask yourself the hard questions and be honest about where you are in relation to any goal.

Here’s a six questions you can ask yourself before setting any fitness goal.

 

Take your time with these questions. Most importantly just be honest.

Unfortunately because you know yourself so well. You are the easiest people to fool.

For that reason it might even be a good idea to ask your partner or close friend/family to answer these questions about you to get a better perspective.

Six questions to ask include:

 

1)Have you ever reached a similar goal before?

 

2) What has worked in the past?

 

3) Why did you fail in the past?

 

4) What’s the biggest things stopping me from getting fit?

 

5) What skills are you really good at that you think might help you reach your fitness goals?

 

6) Have You been able to stick with your fitness goals/ maintain any habits?

 

 

Let’s take Jack from part one who decided he wanted to lose a stone.

This was so important to Jack so he can look after his kids as he gets older. If Jack were to ask himself these questions, these could be some of his answers

 

.

1)Have you ever reached this goal before?

 

Yes I’ve lost weight in the past, almost 2 stone.

 

2) What worked well?

 

I really found cutting out alcohol helped and stopping all the takeaways.

 

3) Why did you fail in the past?

 

The problem is, once I fall off, I start drinking again on the weekends. The diet/ training then goes out the window.

I find that once I get the head down and into the habit of going to the gym then I’m usually fine and can stick to my goals.

 

 

4) What’s the biggest things stopping me from getting fit?

 

Usually during the week I’m fine because I have a good routine with work, it’s just once I get home from work,

I end up just eating crap after dinner. Weekends are also a disaster. Things can get messy, where I can end up drinking and getting take-aways.

 

 

5) What skills are you really good at that you think might help you reach your fitness goals?

 

I think I’m quite good at sticking to a plan once I know what I’m supposed to do. Once I get into the habit I can usually stick to something.

 

6) Have You been able to stick with your fitness goals/ maintain any habits?

 

Well no. I was a member of a gym for about a year and went to all the classes 4x per week but since then I tend to start my diet for about two weeks, lose a bit of weight.

Something always comes up that has me falling off the wagon though. For a couple of months I’ll do absolutely nothing, to only   piling any weight I’ve lost back on.

 

 

Why Ask These Questions?

Asking questions is going to help you gain a deeper understanding about yourself.

Motivation before setting out to achieve your goals, usually isn’t the issue. Unfortunately life happens after we set our plans. It is this pesky normal life that can knock us off track.

 

You might find you work really well off structure and habits, to find that once anything that can derail this structure occurs, all hell breaks loose with the diet.

By finding your reality, you can set realistic goals.

 

Jack has some great things going for him.

Once he gets into the “habit” , he’s usually fine. He’s lost weight in the past.

The problem is he can really fall off the wagon.

He goes from periods of being really strict to periods of no control.

This has led him to where he is today.

 

Jack’s Strengths

  1. Likes guidance and knowing exactly what needs to be done before starting.
  2. Has the discipline to stick to goals
  3. Likes training when he gets into it

 

Jack’s Weaknesses

  1. Hates cooking
  2. Falls off the wagon
  3. The weekend drinking and after work eating.

 

Avoid Getting Punched in the Face

 

When setting a goal, very often we under estimate the effort required to complete the task. We have the grand aspirations but we don’t account for a lot of scenarios.

Issues such as when willpower is going to be low, what happens if things don’t go perfectly as planned.?

Is there a strategy to overcome cravings?

What happens if there is a work event with free food and drink?

How will I handle this?

These are all likely events and if you think that just saying no to all these is the answer then…. good luck.

 

As Mike Tyson would say. “plans are great until you get punched in the mouth”.

 

Once you evaluate yourself, then you can predict the types of punches .

You know certain punches might completely knock you out. You might try to avoid these.

This could be avoiding going to an all you can eat buffet when you are trying to cut calories.

 

I worked with a lady in her late fifties who wanted to lose weight. When we began, she told me that her willpower is non existent.

Put bread in front of her or anything with a hint of sugar and it will be gone within the minute. She also was one of those clients who wouldn’t dream of exercising unless a trainer was there.

 

Now, she seen this as being weak

 

However I would say knowing and accepting our weaknesses is most important.

By knowing her weaknesses she could make the necessary steps. 3 months in and she hasn’t missed a session losing a 14 pound in the process. Bread or no bread.  

 

“Know Thyself”- Socrates

 

 

Part one set the stage, it highlighted your goal and its meaning to you. Part two takes a step back. Without knowing what makes you tick, you are doomed to make the same mistakes as always.

By Evaluating your strengths and weaknesses you take the necessary action to ensure success when reaching the goal.

 

Part three is were you get down to the nitty gritty.

No more deep talk and exploring our feelings. Now it’s time to get to work. Lock in hard with razor sharp focus on your goal.

Like a hawk stalking it’s prey, that fat won’t stand a chance.

 

 

Hopefully you enjoyed this article I highly suggest reading part one if you haven't already.

If you like learning about actually applying health and fitness techniques to your life. 

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If you liked this article in particular then you’d love my article on losing weight without willpower and how work is making you fat.

 

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