You can’t lose weight or achieve anything at the gym if you wander from one machine to the next, not knowing what you’re supposed to do.
If you want to achieve any kind of triumph – whether it’s slimming down, getting leaner, building your physique or working on your stamina – you must have clear goals ahead.
Only if you’re aware of what you want to accomplish and how to get there will you be able to make progress. Otherwise, you’re just setting yourself up for failure.
Here’s how to define gym goals and reach them:
What are Short- and Long-Term Goals?
The first thing you need to do is make a clear projection of what you want your body to look like at some point in the future – do you wish to be ripped, thin or something in between?
There are two goals you have to set, one you’ll be able to accomplish after a couple of months, and one that’ll take an entire year or two.
Keep in mind that these goals should be closely connected.
Next, set up smaller goals based on your long-term projection.
A bigger goal includes tons of smaller ones you can work on daily and achieve them more easily – you can’t bench-press 150 pounds at once, but can work towards that goal on a daily basis.
Start moderately, stick to your plan, keep visualizing the result and slowly work your way towards the end goal.
How to Set Goals?
Creating goals is easier than you think – most people feel that this process is too hard, which is why they often neglect it and simply move on to the workouts.
But they are meaningless if you don’t have a plan.
So, how to start?
As mentioned, set a long-term plan first: how much weight do you want to lose, how buffed do you wish to get, what would you like to look like in the future?
Take numbers into consideration and don’t be afraid to consult a dietitian, a doctor or a personal trainer to find out how these changes will reflect on your health.
Now you can proceed to your short-term plans: if, for instance, you intend to lose about 50 pounds in a year, that’s about a pound a week – it’s simple math.
Therefore, find a nutrition plan and a trustworthy bodybuilding program that’ll allow you to eat properly and work out several times a week.
Also, try not to worry if you skip a gym appointment from time to time – with a full year ahead of you, you’ll definitely make up for it.
Are Your Goals Any Good?
The best way to test your goals is to test your body – measure, weigh, examine and calculate. Numbers don’t lie and they’ll tell you if your tactics are any good.
However, there’s another way to check if your goals are working for you: make sure they are reachable and realistic.
The first time you set your foot in a gym, you’re going to want to see progress as soon as possible. But, it doesn’t come overnight and you shouldn’t expect it to.
That’s why you need to ask yourself if your goals are attainable and try to keep them reasonable.
If this isn’t the case, you won’t be able to meet your expectations, thus remain frustrated and achieve absolutely nothing – unrealistic goals are frustrating and unproductive, so lose them quickly.
Celebrate and Relax
The time you spend in a gym should be fun, exciting and inspiring, so don’t ruin it by trying too hard.
Every time you achieve a certain goal, take a step back, relax and rejoice. And then return to the treadmill!
Samantha has a B.Sc. in nutrition, and has spent two years working as a personal trainer. Since then, she has embarked on a mission to conquer the blogosphere.
When not in the gym or on the track, you can find her on Twitter, or in a tea shop.
She blogs at Ripped.me.