If you have diabetes, maintaining your fitness is of upmost importance. Even if you are committed to the idea of getting fit, it can be difficult to know where to start or how to create goals. In this article, let’s look at 5 factors to consider to make goals meaningful.
The best way to create meaningful goals is to make them SMART. SMART is an acronym for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time bound:
- Specific: Specific means that the goal is simple, sensible, and significant. It shouldn’t be ambiguous or vague.
- Measurable: You must be able to measure the goal. Making it measurable ensures that the goal is both meaningful and motivating.
- Achievable: Your goal must be achievable. It certainly shouldn’t be super easy, but it needs to be attainable.
- Relevant: This one may seem like a no brainer, but your goal needs to be relevant. This means that the goal must be realistic, reasonable, and based on results.
- Time Bound: Set your goal within a time frame. Setting your goal within limits will keep you motivated.
Making SMART Fitness Goals
First, you need to make clear and specific goals. This first step will tell you exactly what you want to achieve and why. You can dig into this first step by answering the following five questions:
- What do I want to accomplish?
- Why is it important?
- Who will be involved?
- Where will my actions take place?
- Which resources and/or limits can be applied to this goal?
Make sure that your specific goal is measurable. The point of having a measurable goal is to track your progress, stay motivated, and know how much work you need to do. To create a measurable goal, answer questions like
- How much? (weight, calories, etc.)
- How long? (time a date or week)
- How will I know I have met my goal?
Now, it’s time to fine tune your goal to make it as effective and helpful as possible. When you first start making goals, it can be easy to set unrealistic goals that sound great on paper but will only discourage you down the line. Ensure that your goal is achievable by asking the following questions:
- How can I achieve this goal?
- What are the constraints associated with achieving this goal?
- Are there any financial factors that will hinder my ability to achieve this goal?
- Does my past show that this goal is achievable?
- Does my current energy and available time hinder my ability to achieve this goal?
Have you ever set a goal only to find out a week or so later that you don’t actually care about achieving it? Melissa Thompson of Diabetes 365 notes “use online websites that focus solely on fitness and health issues for people with diabetes. If unsure of how to proceed with a workout plan, try a website like Diabeticmuscleandfitness.com/.
Making your goal relevant from the beginning will save you a whole lot of wasted time. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to decide if the goal is relevant.
- Is this the right way to approach improving my health?
- Is this something my doctor would approve?
- Is this specific goal worthwhile?
Finally, the last factor to consider is whether the goal is time bound. You need to have a target date for when the goal should be accomplished. This will help you stay motivated and not slack off. Jennifer Anderson of Diabetes Life Solutions mentions “make sure you set realistic time frames to complete your goals. There is NO wrong time limit. You simply don’t want to make your goals unobtainable, as this can lead to frustration and setbacks. “
As an example, ask yourself the following questions:
- When do I need to have this goal finished?
- How can I break this goal up into more manageable tasks? (by the day, week, month, etc.)
Whether you are setting fitness or business goals, make sure they are SMART. Incorporating all of these factors into your goal setting will help keep the goals relevant, meaningful, and conducive to a successful finish and healthier you!