We all have health and fitness goals, but I just want to take a few minutes to check that you're working towards safely achieving your goals.
Firstly, the most important goal is to be healthy. You're probably rolling your eyes right now, but that really should be your main focus.
Don't get too caught up in your goal. Being healthy includes being emotionally and mentally healthy, so don't let your focus on losing inches rule the rest of your life. If you have a day where things don't quite go to plan with your exercise or diet, just get straight back into it. You haven't failed just because you ate a slice of cake!
Learn to love yourself. I know you're probably shouting at the screen that you will love yourself when you hit your goal weight/size/shape. But it's important that you're not doing this because you hate your body, but because you love it and want to look after it. Exercise is about so much more than just weight loss!
I know that most health and fitness goals involve being a certain weight or dress size, but instead, try setting yourself goals which involve your strength, power and ability. Each time you achieve one of those goals you'll feel like an awesome strong ninja!
My goal used to be to look a certain way and I didn't really care about whether I was fit or strong, or even if I was truly happy. As long as I looked good in a dress I was fine...or so I thought. My goals changed loads a few years ago though and now I find myself wanting to shout about my improved strength far more than the size of my waist. Try setting a goal of increasing the number of press ups or burpees you can do, for example.
I've found that it's best to ask yourself these three questions to help you achieve your goal:
It needs to be a realistic goal - it's no good thinking you want to lose a stone within a month or anything silly like that because it's not safe. While you may think that losing that stone will make you happy, the truth is that if you did somehow manage it, you would be compromising your health...and that is never something you should choose to do.
So set a goal that challenges you but is realistic - it can't be too easy because it needs to be something you will work hard towards, but it does need to be something that is physically possible without putting yourself at risk.
The best way to do it is to set small goals along the way - it's scary if you have a plan that you know will take many months or even years, so set small goals to work towards.
Make sure your approach to achieving your goals is safe. Don't resort to any crazy fad diets/pills or freakish workout plans that will strip you of your energy and ruin your body.
Have a holistic approach to health - aim to be healthy inside and out.
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