How to Get Smart About Your Goals

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As we near the end of January, it’s a good time to check in on those goals you set while ringing in the New Year. Setting resolutions is great, as this gives you a chance to evaluate where you’re at and what you want to improve on. Still, as positive as setting new goals is, the stats about these resolutions are not as optimistic.

According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute, about 64% of people who set a New Year’s resolution follow through with it after one month, but that drops to just  46% at the 6-month mark. In 2015, losing weight ranked 1st as the most popular resolution, while fitness was the 5th most popular. Does this ring a bell?

Before you let these stats put a damper on your motivation, remember that plenty of people do achieve their resolutions, and that there is a foolproof goal-setting technique that can help you be a part of those achievers. You’ve probably heard of SMART goals before, but did you know that your favorite health and fitness apps are the perfect tools to help you nail this technique?

Endomondo and MyFitnessPal are made to help you log and train smarter, so before you throw in the towel on your resolution, check out how to set a SMART fitness goal with your apps and stick with it.

S—Specify what your goal is

A specific goal has a much greater chance of being achieved than a general goal. In fact, you’re 10 times as likely to be successful in your resolution when you’ve explicitly set a goal as opposed to simply hoping for some sweeping changes in your health and fitness pursuits. So, when you’re setting your goal, instead of simply stating “I want to lose some weight” or “I want to run faster”, say  “I want to lose 10 pounds this year” or “I want to run a 10K race in 45 minutes by next fall”.

Luckily, you don’t need to rely on a post it note or your memory to make those goals tangible, because thanks to your apps, you’ll have the tools you need right at your side. Your Endomondo app will help you train for your running goal, whether you want to run your first 5K or take on a marathon.

MyFitnessPal makes it easy to keep track of your nutrition and your weight so you can focus on whichever health goal you’ve set for yourself—be it to increase your protein intake or to shed a few extra pounds.

M—Measure as you go

Now that you have that specific goal all set up and ready to go, you need to start tracking your progress. Logging all your workouts and reviewing your history on Endomondo is a great way to see how you’ve improved and how often you’re actually working out.

By connecting your Endomondo and MyFitnessPal accounts, you’ll be able to see your activity and your nutrition all on one dashboard, making it even easier to get an overview of your progress. If weight loss is your goal, then aim for logging your meals every day. 88% of people who track with MyFitnessPal for a full week report losing weight. All that logging will add up to more insights, so the more you track, the better you’ll be able to measure your results.

AFind accountability

Even though most SMART techniques list attainable as a key to success, there is another A-lister that has proven to be even more useful for anyone serious about achieving health and fitness goals. It’s accountability, and the reason why it works is because it makes pursuing the goal more engaging thanks to some positive peer pressure. Knowing that you have to meet your own expectations as well as those of the people around you makes you more likely to take active steps towards your goal.

With your Endomondo app, you can commit to your fitness goal and have friends help keep you on track. You can choose who you want to include as motivators so that you make it as inclusive or exclusive as you want. The MyFitnessPal community is the perfect place to get advice and recipe inspiration, and sharing your goals with others will make it easier to seek out help when you feel your motivation is waning.

RChoose something relevant

Life isn’t static and your routine doesn’t need to be either. Giving yourself some flexibility on how you adjust your goals throughout the week will help you avoid setting yourself on a plan that doesn’t match the healthy lifestyle you’re pursuing, or worse, make it frustrating to follow through with it. MyFitnessPal lets you set different goals for each day of the week, so you can make your goals fit your daily needs.

Let’s say you do a long HIIT session or go for a run and you burn 500 calories. If your net calorie goal is 2,000, you could consume up to 2,500 calories since the workout you tracked increased your calorie budget. Your goals could also be adjusted based on your macronutrient intake, so that you increase your protein and carb intake on the days you need the extra fuel, but keep it lower on your rest days.

TKeep it time-bound

Make sure that you have an actual time-frame for your goal. Without a deadline, it’s more of a dream than a goal. Focus on when you want to get those results and get into the habit of tracking, logging and following your plan to make it a reality.

Schedule your workouts to the time of day that you know you’ll be most willing to do them (though you may want to consider AM workouts, since research indicates that this could help boost your metabolism), and make sure that you follow the reminders to complete your food diary every day so you don’t miss your streak.

What are your goals for this year? How are you planning to reach them? Let us know in the comments!

Free your endorphins!
The Endomondo Team

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