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SMART Fitness Goals: How To Set Them?

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

A fitness goal or regime is a challenge that an individual or their certified training instructor sets to achieve desired results within an estimated period. A fitness goal can include following a specific diet, following a workout regime or making other modifications to lifestyle to achieve it.

What are SMART Fitness Goals?

How different are SMART fitness goals from fitness goals? The SMART in SMART fitness goals stands for the following:

S for Specific 

M for Measurable

A for Achievable 

R for Relevant 

T for Timely

Some self-made fitness goals may be the reason why you are getting frustrated and finding it exceedingly difficult to achieve your desired results. SMART fitness goals are formulated while considering both the body and mind. SMART fitness goals are designed in a way that they allow progress in steps, as a person slowly gets accustomed to the fitness regime which is a sustainable approach to achieving a goal in the long run.

The interpretation for each of the terms combine to form SMART are as the following:

  • Specific– A specific fitness goal is not vague and outlines the needful to the point. It leaves no room for an individual to interpret it on their terms. For example, a fitness goal which states that one should get more exercise is a vague fitness goal but a goal which states that one should do two sets of lunges, 15 times each, for 5 days a week, is a very specific fitness goal.
  • Measurable– The eventual progress which can be measured is focused more here rather than the final goal. For example, if losing weight is an individual’s goal then they can set realistic measurable targets like losing a kilogram every week. 
  • Achievable– The very core of a SMART fitness goal is to set realistic goals which can be achieved. A very strict fitness regime is good for posting snippets on social media and is extremely difficult to achieve in real life.
  • Relevant– Relevant fitness goals are custom made to cater to your body’s requirements. When followed, these fitness goals are most effective and results may be seen right from the early days of starting a fitness regime.
  • Time-Bound- You should be able to achieve your desired results within a stipulated period. If your fitness goal is not time-bound there remains a possibility of you losing motivation in the long run.

How to achieve SMART Fitness Goals?

Below is a list of ways you can achieve SMART fitness goals.

Set a set of smaller goals instead of one big one

The big final fitness goal may seem far away and impossible to achieve. Instead, make a set of smaller goals which you can relate more to and which make more sense to you. Achieve them slowly one by one and in no time you will reach your ultimate goal.

Surrender yourself to your fitness instructor

Do not lie to your fitness instructor or make excuses for skipping workouts. Your fitness instructor is paid by YOU to get you in shape and will not benefit personally from making you work extra hard.

Be honest to yourself

Remain true to yourself and rectify any shortcomings. It is only natural to make mistakes. But it is up to you to address those and prevent them from happening again in the future.

Do not get discouraged by social media

The lives shown on social media platforms by fitness enthusiasts are most likely made up. Do not compare yourself to others and focus on your progress only. 

Be optimistic

No matter how hard your ultimate fitness goal may be looking from where you stand today, it is bound to get easier with time and consistent efforts. 

Set realistic goals

Do not set goals so high that you cannot even see them. Keep your fitness goal within your reach and follow your fitness trainer’s advice.

Do not give up

You may fail once, twice or even thrice on your journey towards becoming fit and healthy. Each time you fail, consider it an indication to try harder next time. Keep yourself motivated.

A SMART fitness goal is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. It allows an individual to achieve their target within a stipulated time frame through a series of relevant and specific workouts which have measurable outcomes and are realistic.

Also Read: Does Skipping Reduce Weight? Examining the Facts and Myths

Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.


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