January is a great time for starting over or just reassessing priorities; either way setting goals is an important part of planning the year ahead.
Our ultimate activity goal could be to complete one of the many great Cayman sporting events or any physical challenge that piques our interest: 100 press-ups, 10,000 steps a day or finally cracking that crow yoga pose.
Use the same goal-setting principles you would in a business-project setting, i.e., SMART — Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely. Choosing an event enforces a time frame and makes our goal “specific,” “measurable” and “timely.” Our goal must be something we want to achieve, therefore it is “relevant.”
Once we have a fixed time frame for our ultimate goal we can work backwards from that end date, fixing our intermediate goals as a series of “achievable” milestones. For example, starting a couch-to-5K run/walk program in January leads to the DG 5K (April 29), a 10K race in August and Cayman Islands half marathon in December.
If you’re just getting moving or restarting after a long layoff, then maybe the first intermediate goal is simply to join a gym or sign up for a tennis program. The hardest part is making the change and creating a new habit; we can’t change our life without changing our lifestyle and that means prioritising ourselves and our chosen goals above as many of the competing distractions as possible.
Whatever our goal and time frame there are many online resources offering training schedules for all abilities. Whether we analyse detailed statistics of our workout downloaded from a fitness tracking device or simply write distance and time in a diary, recording our progress by logging our activity and comparing to our intended schedule will help us stay on track.
Remember, if we aim at nothing that’s exactly what we’ll hit. Good luck and Happy New You!
Tony Watts is a 50-something-year-old fitness fan who teaches cardiovascular and weight/resistance training classes at gyms on Grand Cayman.