It’s hard work…period.

I’ll never tell you it is easy to stick to a healthy lifestyle. I’ll never tell you it is easy to lose weight or hit a new lifting PR.

Because guess what? IT ISN’T!

It’s all hard work.

It’s hard committing the time and energy to eating well and working out intensely. It’s hard to stay committed to a process that can sometimes be slow and frustrating full of ups and downs.

But who wants to work hard!?! I know if I didn’t have to I wouldn’t!

I would love if there was a diet pill or supplement out there that would make me healthy, fit and strong instantly! I would love to eat pizza and ice cream every single day!

But there isn’t an easy way out.

It’s hard work period that will get you where you want to be.

And it’s a constant struggle. There are days, weeks or even months when it is easier to commit and stay committed. But then there are those days, weeks or even months when you feel like you just don’t have one bit of self-control.

I know how hard it can be. It isn’t always easy for me either! I have those days, weeks and even months where I just don’t want to care about my health, how I look or how my training is going.

There are just those times where I would rather binge on ice cream and sit on my couch and do nothing. There are those days when I get stressed and just don’t care. There are those days when I would rather celebrate and indulge than pick out a healthy option or go to the gym.

Heck there are those days where I eat everything and anything in sight. I’m even famous (among my friends) for the day where I gained 12lbs after a binge!

I understand how difficult it can be! But I also know how worth it all the hard work truly is!

I wish I had a solution for the ups and downs, but I don’t. There will always be ups and downs.

BUT if you set clear goals and map out a plan, you are going to have way more ups than downs AND you are going to see all of your hard work TRULY pay off as quickly as it possibly can!

I know I’ve harped on “planning” recently, but it is just so essential! And a big part of planning is goal setting.

Just think…what will make you work harder, a vague desire to be “healthy” or a goal of losing 25lbs by August with an average of 2lbs lost per week?

I would think the second goal would be more motivating because it is specific, broken down into long and short-term goals, and has an end date.

As cheesy as it sounds, there is something to setting S.M.A.R.T. goals – Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely.

  • Specific – A specific goal answers these six question: Who is involved? What do I want to accomplish. Where do I want to accomplish it (identify a location)? In what time frame will I complete it (establish a time frame)? What are some requirements and constraints? Why do I want to accomplish this goal (specific reasons, purposes and benefits)? Setting specific goals helps you outline exactly what it will take to reach your goals in the desired time frame.
  • Measurable – Establish criteria to measure your progress and set target dates. Measuring your progress helps you stay on track. For one, seeing results will help encourage you to continue. And two, short-term goals with measurable results help keep you motivated to succeed every single day.
  • Attainable – Almost any goal is attainable if you develop the attitudes, abilities, skills and financial capacity to reach them. You just need to plan out your steps wisely and establish a time frame that allows you to carry out your plan.
  • Realistic – If you are WILLING and ABLE to accomplish a goal, it is realistic. Also, a goal can be both high  and realistic. Actually,  high goals may be even easier to reach than low goals since low goals supply less motivation.
  • Timely – You must set out a timeframe in which you will accomplish your goals. An “end date” creates a sense of urgency and motivation. Also, you need to let yourself know that there will be a time when you can have your favorite food again or skip a workout just because you are tired. You need to know that at some point you will get some sort of “break” from your plan.

By setting goals that follow this criteria, not only are you more likely to accomplish them, but you will also build your self-image. You see yourself as worthy of these goals, and develop the traits and personality that allow you to possess them.

Setting S.M.A.R.T. goals will help you realize that your plan is doable!

So yea…It’s all hard work.

BUT by setting great goals and creating a plan to achieve them, you will find that not only does the hard work seem less daunting, but that you also achieve greater success.

Posted on April 13, 2012, in Man Biceps and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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