Looking Forward - Goal Setting

By Dave DiFabio

September has come and gone. Last weekend I was in New Orleans. It was a trip that I'd been planning since April. September was a very busy month with our students coming back to school and all of our programs commencing for the school year. So to say that I was looking forward to a little time off is an understatement. It was only a four day trip but it made all of that hard work in September totally worth it.

It's good to have something to look forward to isn't it? What are you looking forward to? What are you working towards? What's your plan? Without a short term goal and a small reward in sight, it's hard to stay motivated. Long term goals and huge rewards are great but sometimes it's hard to stick with the daily grind when the ultimate destination seems so far away.

Certainly you should start by envisioning the entire journey (running a marathon in 3 hours, losing 25 lbs for a wedding, rehabbing an ACL injury, etc.) but the second step is to break it down into small road trips separated by short pit-stops along the way. Obviously the small road trips represent short-term goals (2 lbs of weight loss, 5 lbs added to Squats, etc), and the short pit stops represent a small reward (day off, cheat meal, new workout gear, etc.) for successfully completing the trip. It really comes down to acknowledging the little victories and early success because there really are no LITTLE victories. They all matter, they all count, and they all take effort. So acknowledge those results because they lead to motivation which leads to more results.

There's nothing more motivating than actually noticing a difference. You just need to know how to plan for it and how to notice it. For example many people take my spinning classes because they have heard that spinning is a great way to lose weight. But they don't how many times per week they should do it. They don't know how hard they're actually working because they don't wear a heart rate monitor to track their intensity. They don't know that before they actually notice something different in the mirror they should notice some other stuff first. What other stuff? Well, just to mention a few things: Heart rate comes down faster between intervals, less muscle soreness between workouts, lower resting pulse, easier to maintain higher hear rates during workouts, etc. These are indications that one is on his/her way to liking the reflection in the mirror.

I hope this has given you something to think about.

If you've missed any of my past articles/newsletters, read them here: www.teamspeedfitness.com

Till next time....Train Like You Play, Play Like You Train.

Dave DiFabio MA, CSCS, USAW

Owner/Strength & Conditioning Coach - Team Speed Fitness LLC