As mentioned in my last post, I am a HUGE fan of setting goals in all areas of life. I was recently listening to a podcast, Unmistakable Creative, and the interviewee, Jeff Leisawitz, was expressing the importance of goal setting. He said, “don’t underestimate the power of a to-do list. If someone doesn’t have a to-do list… well, they just won’t ever get anywhere in life.” Wow. That’s huge! I smugly grinned and gave myself a little pat on the booty (#bootygains…) because I’m a huge fan of to-do lists and implement them heavily in my life.
I feel like if I don’t have healthy weight loss (or weight gain) goals then I am destined for disappointment. Below, I will share with you what my previous weight loss goals were, what my goals are now and how I set them.
Looking “Healthy” Isn’t Always Healthy
Something that is beginning to come into light a lot more is that “fit” looking people may not actually be that healthy. Breaking news, right? When I was new in my fitness and weight loss journey I would look at these models with ripped abs and think “wow…they’re so fit and healthy.” I actually equated abs with health and that simply isn’t so. I’d like to think I am pretty healthy and I don’t have abs.
This is literally my stomach right now and I haven’t even eaten yet (#morningabs). My mom has a cool couch, right? Anyway…
Here’s the thing, health is very subjective. If you ask 5 people what health means to them I am sure you would get 5 different responses. People can get pretty convicted about their health and dietary views so I am not here to tell you what it should be for you. I am here to tell you that chiseled abs, biceps, tight butts and even chicken and broccoli *gasp* do NOT equate health so please get that out of your head (not trying to be mean, I did say please).
My fitness goals used to be all about how I looked, how my legs looked, butt, stomach, you get it. It was all about comparison and was so unhealthy. I was always chasing something that was just out of reach. It did a real number of my esteem and overall mental health.
Mental Health, The Most Important.
If you decide to hang around here with me (you should), you will find that I am going to touch on mental health a LOT. Why? Because it’s freaking important. It’s so much more important than meeting personal records in the gym or having abs for a profile picture.
I am of the belief that all elements of our beings should be in balance in order for us to achieve optimum health. What I mean by that is, I think every part, mind, body and soul, needs adequate attention. Daily.
If you look at those fitness models, the ones on magazines and on Instagram, they have a huge smile and glowing skin to go with their gorgeous abs. Before I go any further, I want you to know that I am not trying to be a Debbie Downer (sorry deb), I love health and fitness but I hate what it’s become in the industry. I am not bitter towards the fitness models…(actually I am….jk).
Back to the point, they probably look like they are having the time of their lives but, do you know what they have to give up to maintain a physique like that? Pretty much everything. If they are honest I wonder if they are genuinely happy. The industry demands SO much from these women (and men). Sadly, once they reach a certain age (which is pretty darn young) they are thrown to the side. That’s a lot to give for something so temporary.
Protect your mental health. Choose a plan, a diet and lifestyle that is sustainable and that makes you happy. Stop following those Instagram pages if they make you feel like shit! I have.
Motivation is NOT looking at someone you WISH you could look like, then hating the body you are in and PUNISHING yourself (strict dieting and unhealthy exertion) because you don’t look like them. Read that again. We have it all wrong, that is not motivation. That is glorifying how a body looks and that is unhealthy and wreaks havoc on our self-worth and mental health. Stop. It.
Stop commenting “body goals.” No. How about you love your body for all it has carried you through. Love your legs for how far they have carried you, love your arms for all the things you can lift and do, love your stomach for all the food it has digested from all those fun times with family and friends. You are SO blessed. You are goals. Not your abs, not your quads. You.
Great. Now I am emotional.
How I Set Healthy Weight Loss Goals, My Super Secret Formula
I like goals. I like them because they allow me to be motivated for change and improvement without the need for comparison. For me, it truly is just day-by-day becoming a better me and I freaking love that!
When I first started my weight loss journey and I had no direction but I had a lot of comparison. Think about it, if you’re trying to get to a goal what will get you there quicker? Right. Direction. We do that by setting goals. Comparison literally accomplishes nothing, it only distracts us from our ultimate goal.
So! Here’s how I do it. I have a weekly goal list that I make every Sunday night for the following week. Then I have a daily list that I make every night for the following day. It might sound intimidating but it’s super simple. I actually make these goals for all areas of my life now, not just health and fitness. Maybe I’ll do a post on that too.
Let’s just keep it simple for now. Pick 3 goals for your health and fitness. Keep them small and attainable. If you’re just starting I DO NOT recommend setting goals that warrant a whole lifestyle change. Nothing like, workout 6 times a day, no sugar… you know what I mean. Keep it simple. I put mine on an index card and tape it to my mirror. I see it every day, several times a day because, I am constantly checking myself out…kidding.
Try it out! Tell me how it goes. It’s a powerful feeling when each week you accomplish more goals than the previous week, no external comparison required.