Although many people want to lose weight, they often find themselves frustrated when they attempt to do so. This frustration could result from a variety of factors, such as not seeing results as quickly as one would like or constantly being in an environment that is not conducive to the cultivation of healthy eating habits. Irrespective of the challenge you experience as you attempt to lose weight, you should note that there are several highly effective strategies you can implement in order to accomplish your goal of shedding unwanted weight. One of the best things you can do as you begin creating goals is to ensure that they are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Relevant, and Time Sensitive. Here is a brief review of why creating SMART goals can help you accomplish your weight loss goals:
In defining SMART goals, Henry M. Cothran and Allen F. Wysocki note that “A goal is specific when it provides a description of what is to be accomplished.” And with respect to shedding pounds, you should note that your weight loss goal needs to be specific. This is important because having a vague understanding of how much weight you want to lose will not help you in devising the plan you will implement to accomplish your goal. On the other hand, when you begin naming exact figures-say, 100 pounds-your mind begins to think about all of the different things you will do to accomplish the goal. (And that could include anything from hiring a personal trainer to completing a 21-day juice fast.)
In addition to being specific, your weight loss goal must be measurable. While saying something like “I’m going to take the fat off my tummy and thighs” may represent your ultimate weight loss goal, it is not measurable because it does not provide you with numerical values you need to have in order to begin making positive change. Thus instead of simply stating that you want to remove fat from certain areas of your tummy and thighs, a good goal-which is measurable-would be to state that you will go from a size 10 jeans to a size 4.
The goal you set must be one that you can begin implementing immediately. If it is a goal that requires you to acquire things you won’t be able to access for several weeks or months-such as a gym membership or a $2,000 piece of exercise equipment-then it’s pointless. So if you plan to lose weight by working out and can’t afford either one of the aforementioned items, make sure your goal involves the use of equipment and tools you can afford-like inexpensive workout DVDs that can be purchased from your local supermarket.
Although being ambitious is wonderful, it is important that the goal you set be one that you can actually attain. So if you set a goal to lose 100 pounds so you can wear a dress to a wedding that takes place in two months, know that you are very unlikely to accomplish this goal in a healthy fashion. Moreover, you will likely feel disappointed upon realizing that you have not met your goal. A more realistic goal to set would be a commitment to lose 2 pounds each week over the next eight weeks in order to go down two dress sizes for the wedding.
5. Time Sensitive.
In discussing why making goals time sensitive is important, Top Achievement notes that “A goal should be grounded within a time frame.” Why? Because, as they state, “With no time frame tied to it there’s no sense of urgency.” This concept has proven true, and that is why it is important to make your weight loss goal time sensitive. An example of a good time sensitive weight loss goal would be: I will lose fifteen pounds by September 2nd. Time sensitive goals are effective in aiding the weight loss process because they enable you to determine what types of lifestyle changes you need to make in order to accomplish the goal.
Although many people want to know how to lose weight, few realize that creating SMART goals can be integral to accomplishing their desire to shed unwanted pounds. Yet by implementing the weight loss tips outlined above, you can be on the road to a slimmer, shapelier physique starting today. Good luck!
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