Ok, so I like ticking boxes, so I tend to have a few goals. Just one goal doesn’t give as much satisfaction as achieving lots of them. So when setting your goals I recommend setting several, so that you can do lots of ticking and feel lots of satisfaction (and get lots of treats for achieving them!)
Before we start, I’d like to mention something important (it’s that whole cover my butt phase, but it’s especially important in this tip). If you are under eighteen, unless you are seriously obese I don’t think you should be looking at weight loss, even my pretty balanced tips. If you do have a weight problem as a teen or child, then you need to talk to your doctor and make sure that someone is overseeing your weight loss. Same goes for if you are older, or have any kind of serious medical illness. Even ‘normal’ people, I would ideally like you to run your goals past a really good mate who will tell you the truth, so that they can say wether you are aiming for too little or too much.
Setting a Goal
Right then, what you are aiming for in coaching terms is a SMART goal! If you don’t have a SMART goal then your chances of success are much reduced. Here is what SMART means …
- Specific: be clear about what you would love to achieve, e.g. to Become Fit, Healthy & Slim or ‘Feel great in my clothes’ or ‘Be able to run further’ or ‘Be able to play with my kids for longer’. Think about what YOUR actual problem is, rather than what you think that you should be doing.
- Measurable: make sure that you have an objective measure of your progress e.g. Aiming for a BMI of __ and a Body Fat% of __ and Weight of __ and a dress size of __. Check out last weeks post on how to measure your progress.
- Achievable: Remember to set an objective that includes a healthy amount of weight loss within a sensible amount of time. For instance, once you have done the initial spurt then a good plan is 1-2 lbs of weight a week, because more than that you are losing muscle, which will end up with you putting the weight back on again or not getting fitter/healthier.
- Realistic: how tall are you, are you sure that you would look good as a size 10, maybe a size 12 would be more suitable? Is it really within your values set to be very slim? Would you be happier with a few curves left over?
- Timeable: set a sensible number of dates to check your progress on, with rewards if you achieve your goals by then.
How often to Measure
When you have set your goal, you will then need to keep an eye on it.
Most professionals recommend that you don’t jump on the scales every day because it can become obsessive and doesn’t take into account the natural ups and downs. I would suggest weighing yourself on the same day at the same time each week.
Then do the rest of the measurements on a monthly basis, because by looking at it in detail on a monthly basis you won’t get the results skewed by your periods etc.
What happens if you don’t get the results you wanted
Go back through my posts and ..
- Complain and whine for a bit (no longer than 1 day!)
- Get up, dust yourself off and start again
- Reconsider your goal; was it really SMART?
- Remotivate yourself
- Check which of the 4 important areas you might have missed
- Read the rest of my posts in the weight loss category to see if there are any tips that might help
- You are always welcome to post a question in my question corner by emailing MummyWhisperer at Me dot Com
Some examples from my life
Here is an example of my goals. I had put on weight due to working from home; in particular working too much and not leaving enough time for me. So I decided that 2011 was the year for me to sort this out for 3 big reasons:
- I wasn’t feeling fabulous about my body
- I wanted an obvious/measurable sign of success to give me more confidence
- I wanted to improve my health long term so that I get to play with my grandchildren
I set the goals by half stone increments, but my major goal was to achieve a ‘healthy’ weight according to the Body fat percentage etc. From February to now I have lost 22lb’s, am ‘healthy’ and feeling a whole lot better about my body; it’s at that kind of ‘good in the right sort of clothes’ stage. But I’m aiming for another 6lbs in order to get that final comfortable feeling, a general dress size of 12 and a ‘don’t have to where clothes that hide bumpy bits’ stage. I might then consider more exercise to get to ‘Looks good in a bikini stage’, but that depends on whether I can be bothered by then.
I am NOT aiming for size 10 and lower than 10 stone, because that would require exercising 5 times a week for my body type (been there, done that) and more time than I have got to focus on cooking. Plus I don’t really care enough about being a size 10, because since becoming a Mum, I have found curves much more attractive than skinniness. Maybe when I have older children I might focus more on the ‘looking good in a bikini’ aim, but for now it’s more about how I feel about myself every day of the week, than on specific holiday occasions.
Need some help setting a SMART goal?
I’m offering a free 15 minute laser coaching session this week to 3 of my blog followers (signed up to the RSS feed), or facebook page fans, or people who signed up for my email list. It’s on a first come, first serve basis, so reply asap if you would like help!
** Sorry this offer is now closed, but you can always ask for help on my facebook page or my problem corner.
Whats coming up
Right so over the past few weeks we’ve looked at making sure you are sorted mentally, now I’m going to share some hints on food, hydration and exercise. There’s lots more coming up, and many of these hints you’ll have never heard anywhere before.
If you find these tips helpful, feel free to sign up for my RSS feed or subscribe by email so that you don’t miss any, tell your mates, and join my facebook fan page.