See how goals and motivations help you maintain your fitness training for a healthy lifestyle.
You can convince yourself of getting out of bed and start training, but to keep doing this more often is another story.
Having a healthy lifestyle is not merely about fitness training, as we will see in this article. It is about the mindset that addresses goals and motivations.
Goal setting and motivation are interrelated and act as critical enablers for your achievements.
While goal setting serves as a directional compass to boost motivation, motivation acts as the energy tank to achieve the set goals.
Therefore, any person who wants to train and have a healthy lifestyle should recognize why he or she wants to do it.
Answering this question is about Goals and Motivations.
Goal setting is the main element in establishing strong motivation. Goal setting not only shows you where you are going, but it also shows you how to get there.
A survey published by the IDEA Personal Trainer Journal on the reasons why people train and seek a healthy lifestyle found out that 82% of respondents chose body shaping as their main reason.
|Goals||% of Respondents to Survey|
|Meet Social Needs||23%|
Reasons for weight management, muscular strength, and exercise adherence got 72% of the votes.
To improve lifestyle reason got only 56% of the votes, while to meet social needs came down the ladder of only 23% of the votes.
Beware, however, of allowing your goals to impose limits on your performance by making them “final destinations.”
Instead, look at your goals as steppingstones that will put you in a position to access your next stepping stone.
So, be mindful of your strengths and weaknesses. It will help you in identifying where you need help most.
Another survey on the obstacles facing men and women seeking a healthy lifestyle and to be fit indicates that nutrition and eating for men are where they need help most. On the other hand, exercise and moving more is their least worry.
Almost the same results are for women with some slight variations in the ratio.
The interesting finding is that reducing stress levels and getting better sleep variables are more worrisome for both men and women than exercise and moving more.
These findings underline the importance of identifying and recognizing the nature of the goals we may choose, intrinsic or extrinsic.
This table defines the nature of these goals so we can understand how to achieve our objective enablers, thereby achieve our goals.
|Goal Content||Goal Orientation|
|Satisfy Competitiveness Desires||Extrinsic|
Now, it is time to ask the question: What are your objectives? Then you can develop a scientifically sophisticated and complete program within the bounds of your interest levels, monetary restrictions, and lifestyles.
The following chart can be an example of the road map of how we can set our goals and relay them to requirements, performance, and results.
We can see that setting goals process is sequential, where each objective leads you to another until you reach your ultimate goal.
Consequently, excellence is an ongoing process for those who are passionate, committed trainees.
Finally, to help you focus and transform your sincere desires into goals and achieve your training endeavors, you need to:
- Define your goals and make them attainable.
- State your goals in writing: Busy schedules and the various complexities of life have a way of turning sincere desires into distant memories. They must be written down and put in a place where you can see them often.
- Positively state your goals: Always use a positive frame of reference in constructing your goals. Not I won’t eat junk food anymore, but I will eat healthy foods each day. Better yet, I enjoy eating healthy foods each day. The goal is an affirmation, which can be used to precipitate action.
- Have a deadline for their completion: To be motivated, draw a timeframe for completing your goals. Otherwise, there will be no sense of urgency, and before you know it, you are right back where you started: no closer to your goal. Of course, unexpected problems and circumstances often arise. When this happens, adjust the completion date accordingly.
A goal must have a sincere emotional appeal. If it does not, there will be no urgency or passion. Learn to prioritize the most important goals and make the distinction between a mere wish and an important objective.
A goal must be challenging, yet realistic. If the goal is too easy, such as I will go to the gym tomorrow, it may not get enough attention to get it done. Conversely, if it is too difficult, it may lack the confidence to finish it. Set goals in such a way that with a sustained, concentrated effort, you know you can get the job done.
Motivation is a complex subject. A motive is as an impulse or physiological need acting as an incitement to action.
This inner drive compels people to make an initial action. The initial action may take the form of diet pills, buying exercise equipment, joining a gym, experimenting with a new diet, opting for surgery, or acquiring the services of a personal trainer.
In turn, this internal drive usually stems from the basic need for acceptance or the need for recognition.
While we see that the goal content can be intrinsic or extrinsic, motivation is mostly intrinsic.
In a nutshell, it is the inner motor that drives your energy towards achieving your goals.
Understanding the goals and motivation and their interrelation leads us to balance the mental process of choosing the right fitness training program with what suits us as trainees on the ground.
Hence, we reached the point, where we should start building a fitness training program.
Yet, building such a program needs physical and basic fitness assessment.
Each physical assessment should at least include the parameters of muscular strength, endurance, flexibility, and cardiovascular endurance.
This is followed by in-depth assessments that provide a baseline to evaluate progress and the areas that need improvement.
From there, we can develop a personalized program based on what is best for you.
Before we go, I would like to talk shortly about the adage “no pain, no gain“.
When applied to exercise, it has often led to more than one unsuspecting individual to attempt to do too much.
A strong argument could be that “no pain equals no gain equals no sense.”
It is in your best interest to keep in mind that exercise does not have to “hurt” to produce improvements in fitness levels.
Until the next blog, keep your eyes on your goals and inner drive; keep it always on motivation mode.
This article is written by Taimour Abeqwa: Certified Personal Trainer by the International Sports Science Association ISSA.
Taimour is a professional trainer, specialized in weight lifting, strength conditioning, and weight management.