In the United States, only 38.8% of adults ages 18 to 24 are receiving enough exercise. That number continues to decrease in an inverse relationship with a person’s age. This means that only a third of the adult population in America is meeting cardio and strengthening needs. As the body develops over time, without the use of consistent exercise, adults lose muscle strength and mobility. This affects every aspect of life, from everyday tasks to the largest feats of exercise.
Suffice to say, prioritizing fitness is important for a well-balanced, fuller life. So how do we accomplish this goal? One of the most widely followed, evidence-based practices in goal setting is SMART goals. SMART goals are specific to your lifestyle, and work to improve on what you are already accomplishing. Coined in the journal Management Review in 1981, SMART goals have expanded to be one of the most effective practices in accomplishing desired gains while tracking your progress.
Like any military operation, you need a plan to see success. Veterans know more than anyone the discipline, strategy, and perseverance it takes to implement a mission, no matter the size. The same can be said for fitness goals. By approaching fitness with an evidence-based strategy, you are more likely to follow through and hold yourself accountable to the plan.
A SMART fitness goal is one that is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. Read below for an explanation of how this can positively impact your fitness goals.
Goal setting often falls through, and here is why:
- Lack of Ownership: Your fitness journey only affects you- and how you approach everyday. Veterans are used to putting in the hard work to see positive results, especially in conjunction with a team. With fitness goals, placing the product on yourself can be less motivating unless you think of the big picture. In a fitness journey, you are your best self in your journey to achieve greatness.
- Lack of Precision: In the military, everything is precise. Effective and accurate strategies are in your nature. Making too broad of goals takes the precision out of the exercise, and this can lead to disillusionment.
- Lack of Direction: You need your strategic plan to see results. Without a roadmap, you will be where you were before you began this journey. Setting actionable, intentional goals removes the lack of direction so you can follow your own personal journey.
SMART goals is a mindful, intentional tool used to propel you to be your best. As you continue on your fitness journey, choosing SMART goals provides the intrinsic motivation and success factor that ultimately propels you forward. When thinking about how to implement them in your own life, looking at your current routine, achievable areas of growth, and factoring in your lifestyle can be the help you need to improve your overall fitness. Being strategic and tackling it with all of your strength ultimately provides the foundation you need for your fitness journey. For intentional, hand-crafted help with your journey, VRB’s Total Wellness Pack can be one step in your SMART fitness journey.