Ready to start making smart weight loss goals and taking the steps to actually achieve them? If you’re like millions of people across the country – and around the world, for that matter – then you’re done with the failed New Year’s resolutions, fad weight loss products and disastrous crash diets. It’s time to think realistically and healthfully and get the job done.
Using SMART Weight Loss Goals
Many people find SMART weight loss goals to be the best and easiest way to help them plan and execute their goals. Yes, the capital letters are there on purpose, because each one of them represents a different step in ensuring that you’re thinking realistically and setting yourself up for the long term.
Creating a SMART Weight Loss Strategy
The following is your SMART weight loss plan, and an example of how you can use it for your own success.
Specifying your goal gives you a greater chance of actually accomplishing that goal rather than a general. In the instance of SMART weight loss, you would specify:
- What is my motivation for this weight loss?
- How will you accomplish this?
- Where will this weight loss take place?
If you were looking to lose 20 pounds, your goals may look something like this:
I am going lose 20 pounds, mostly from my midsection, from the privacy of my own home. I will do this by reducing my calories in only eating at home, exercising daily- cardio three times a week and strength training three times a week, supporting my efforts with the top diet pills for weight loss, and utilizing all opportunities to become more active.
It is important to track your progress because it motivates you and gives you incentives to keep going. You track your progress by:
- Keeping a food and fitness journal app or web-based program, tracking calories and exercise
- Weighing yourself weekly or monthly
- Taking your measurements monthly
In order to best track your 20 pounds, you would keep a record of what you eat every day. This may include calories, other nutrition facts such as fat, protein and carbohydrates. It’s also a good idea to track your fitness efforts, including how often you’re exercising, for how long your exercise, and how intense the exercise was.
Meaning the goals you set are realistically attainable and not too extreme or unachievable. Ask yourself how often is reasonable for you to eat at home and pack your own meals. Also think about how often you actually exercise. If you can’t exercise 6 days of the week, maybe change it to five, but increase the quality of those workout times.
If you are new and exercising, a best place to start would be a gentler routine, though aiming to stick to the same number of minutes in order to set the habit within your schedule. The same goes with eating and your starting point could be making sure to eat food prepared at home most days of the week.
Means identifying the goals that are most important to you and listing the reasons why. Also, figuring out ways you can make them happen will help inspire you and keep you motivated throughout the entire weight loss process.
An example of this would be:
I am trying to lose weight to reduce my risk of cardiovascular disease. Losing an 20 extra pounds will add many years to my life and will improve the quality of those years. I can achieve my weight loss goals by sticking to my goal plan, tracking my progress accurately and often, and continuing to do my research about better health.
Goals are goals that are established with a sense of urgency. A timely goal is a goal that is high priority and should not be overtaken by day-to-day inevitable crisis. There are many ways to make a goal timely but one of the most efficient and proven effective ways to do this is to invest in a planner calendar. Pre-planning meals, scheduling time for exercise, and tracking progress overall will make it easier to stick to your goals. Also setting a date of completion for your goal in writing and on your calendar also motivates you to stick to the plan in getting there. ‘I will lose 20 pounds by March, which is two months from now. In order to do that I would have to lose 10 pounds a month.’
Writing your SMART goals down on a nice paper and hanging them in places where you will see them will help you continue to stay motivated. Remember that positivity will inspire you and keep you going far more effectively than negative statements and shaming. Word your goals carefully and encouragingly.