Women lose up to 20% of their cardiovascular fitness when they quit exercising between Thanksgiving and New Years Day. If you don’t want this to be you, here’s how to use the “SMART” System to maintain your fitness levels over the Holidays.
S = “Specific.” If you truly desire success, be clear about what you want to accomplish. “I want to lose weight” is not specific. “I want to lose 7% of body weight within the next 6 months” is specific. Over the holidays, set reasonable fitness goals: “I will schedule at least four exercise classes between Xmas and New Years Day” is an example.
M = “Measurable.” We hear this often in our Bolder Barre & Fitness studio: “I want to be fit again.” That’s a worthy motivation, but not a measurable goal. “I want to increase my exercise to five hours per week” is. If you have a fitness tracker, use it to help define “measurable”, such as: “I will increase my daily average exercise calorie burn from 600 to 800 in the next month.”
A = “Achievable” AKA “Action-oriented.” A goal to lose 20 pounds in the next four weeks is not achievable, not to mention unhealthy. However, a goal to lose 1 pound per week for the next 12 weeks is achievable. If a goal is WHAT you want to accomplish, the “Action-oriented” goals are the HOW. Example: I will increase exercise to five hours a week within the next month. Over the Holidays, an achievable goal may be to hold your weight steady between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day.
R = “Relevant.” What is important to you: Is losing a few pounds what really motivates you? Or is it that you want better shape and tone in your arms and thighs? Do you want to improve your stamina for dance or performance in sports? Each will require a different plan. Don’t set goals others think you should pursue, set those that matter to you and which will keep you motivated.
T = “Time-Bound.” Have an end-point: I will accomplish [GOAL] by [DATE]. “I will lose 5% of body weight by March 31st.” If the goal is relevant and achievable, setting an end-point will keep you focused. For your Holiday exercise, sign up in advance for the classes you want, and put them in your calendar. Making your fitness a priority will help you with all your other commitments.
Get help from others: Improve results by creating more accountability. Share your goals with your fitness partners (use your #BolderBarreTribe for this!) and ask for their help and support.
Once the SMART Method becomes second nature, use it to set other, smaller Action goals which will help you achieve your larger ones. For example:
I will skip the fatty, sugary Starbucks drinks until after New Years Day. (A Peppermint White Hot Chocolate with whole milk and whipped cream in Venti delivers 730 calories and 27 grams total fat.) Yikes!
I will drink water instead of soda every day this week.
I will choose a light, healthy lunch entree twice next week.
Next family pizza night, I’ll have one less slice.
I will connect with a Fitness Partner every day to stay on track over the Holidays.
Start “Living Bolder®!”
Rita Jenkins-Wolcott, CPT/NASM
Founder, Bolder Barre® & Fitness
Regency Square, 2469 SE Federal Hwy, Stuart, FL
© 2016 Bolder Barre, LLC, ALL rights Reserved.