Setting SMART Fitness Goals in 2014

Everyone has a different reason for wanting to get in shape.  It’s important to ask a simple question before getting started with an exercise program:  What are my fitness goals for 2014?

Your goals may be health related or perhaps performance oriented. Your exercise program should be designed with your goals in mind. Many of the health related benefits of exercise can be attained with 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise five days a week.

Setting Fitness GoalsPerformance oriented programming will likely require a greater time commitment and /or exercising at a higher intensity.

What’s your current activity level?

Increasing your weekly exercise time 10%/week assures progress toward your goal while minimizing your risk of over-doing it.

Do you have any health issues?

Vigorous exercise may not be appropriate for you if you have heart disease, high blood pressure, unusual shortness of breath, or diabetes. Consult with your physician prior to beginning a program vigorous exercise.

What do you enjoy doing?

You’ll be more likely to maintain exercise habits if the activities you choose are comfortable and enjoyable. Modify your exercise program as needed to enhance your compliance.

Enter the Beaumont New Year, New You sweepstakes for a chance to attend a Beaumont healthy cooking class or a Beaumont cook book. Let us help you with your New Year’s resolution!

Set SMART fitness goals
Once you have an idea of what you want to achieve and where you currently stand, it’s time to set SMART fitness goals in 2014—one of the most successful methods for meeting your fitness goals:

SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely

S: Deciding to “get healthy” or “drink more water” isn’t a specific goal. Set specific goals like “exercise three times a week for at least 30 minutes” or “stop drinking soda.”

M: Make your progress measurable. If your goal is to exercise three times a week for at least 30 minutes, write down how many times and for how long you exercised each week. If you want to drink eight glass of water a day, write down how many glasses of water you drink every day. You’ll be able to see if you’re succeeding or need to improve because it will all be measurable.

A: If you’ve never jogged before, setting a goal of winning a 5k at the end of year might be a little aggressive. Choose something attainable, like participating in your first 5k, or if you think it’s attainable, finishing your first 5k (walking or running). Don’t discourage yourself with unattainable goals.

R: Your goals should be relevant and realistic. If you’ve never set foot in a gym, vowing to work out five times a week might not be realistic. Any progress towards positive change is progress. So instead of vowing never to eat fast food again, why not set a goal of only eating fast food once a week and keeping your goal realistic.

T: Force yourself to stick to a plan and make that plan time-bound. Work on your first round of goals for three months, then at the end of 90 days, reevaluate your progress and set new goals. Without a time-bound structure, it’s much harder to stay motivated with no finish line in sight.

Let Beaumont help design a program just for you
It’s never easy to set fitness goals and stick to them, especially if gyms and exercise plans intimidate you. The weight loss experts at the Beaumont Weight Control Center are here to help get you on the path to developing smart fitness goals. Beaumont’s dieticians, exercise physiologists and physicians are here to help. Learn more by signing up for our free weight control seminar and let a Beaumont doctor help design a program to meet your specific fitness goals.

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