When we began our Summer Challenge, we asked you to submit your goals online.
We were so inspired by the amazing variety of goals, aspirations, ideals and hopes that you all had.
One of the goals that seemed to keep coming up again and again was the desire to lose weight, get in shape or tone up for a special occasion.
Many of you were preparing for your upcoming wedding (congrats!), which is of course a wonderfully motivating reason to look your very best.
Others wanted to look fab for their birthday, or even for their child’s birthday.
Interestingly this was a common one, as it often feels like a bit of a milestone to reach your child’s birthday and see how much you’ve changed in the past 12 months. Not to mention there will be plenty of photos!
Then there was the challenge to look and feel amazing for your school reunion, a summer holiday, a cruise, and even wanting to just feel confident enough to swim in the pool in summer.
Having a goal like this in mind like this is a terrific way to motivate yourself to eat well, move more, and be healthy.
The reason is that it fits in with the five key points for goal setting. A goal needs to be SMART. By that we mean that it needs to be:
Below we will cover in more detail how you can make sure that your goals fit this criteria (which also means you are more likely to reach them!)
If you just have a goal of ‘I want to lose weight’, how will you know when you have achieved it? When you’ve lost 100 grams, or 5kg, 10kg?
So instead of saying ‘I want to lose weight’ this is where you can be very detailed about exactly what you want. Something like ‘I want to lose 4kg by my birthday on December 15th’ would be a great example of a specific goal.
Without making your goal measurable it’s almost impossible to see whether it has been achieved or not. That’s why it’s not enough to say ‘I want to get fit’. How will you measure that?
Instead you could say ‘I will go for a 30 minute walk 5 times per week in order to help me reach my goal of fitting into my old swimsuit by Christmas.’
You need to make sure that it is actually possible to achieve your desired goal. If you had a goal to take part in a marathon next weekend when you’ve never been for a run – this might not really be feasible.
If you have decided that you would like to drop 3 dress sizes by the end of the month, once again that is not a realistic or healthy goal to aim for.
If you feel as though your goal is too big and might be a little overwhelming – such as ‘I want to lose 30kg in the next 12 months’ you could consider breaking your goals down into manageable chunks.
For instance you might set weekly or monthly goals instead, which means you can feel a real sense of achievement along the way.
Here is where having the upcoming event really helps to make your goal very relevant to your life right now. You aren’t just trying to lose weight for no particular reason.
You know you want to look and feel your best for the occasion, so this should be a great motivator to keep you focused.
Try keeping the invitation or a hand written note about the event somewhere that you can see it daily, such as on your mirror.
This is where having a special occasion can really help, as you have a specific deadline that you need to achieve your results by.
Without a specific time frame it can be easy to put off healthy eating and exercise for later, as there is no set time for you to reach your goal.
So start the countdown, work out what you need to do to reach your goal, and then go for it!
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