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What Is So Smart about SMART Goals?

In my last post, I talked about the need to develop the confidence that will help to sustain a behavior change. That article introduces the notion of the SMART goal as one method I use with my clients to assist in building confidence in the ability to change behavior.

Often clients will jump into a new exercise and/or nutrition program with great enthusiasm, attempting to make significant changes in a short period of time. While this process may work for some, and even most of us in the short-term, it rarely results in long-term, sustainable lifestyle changes. SMART goals allow my clients to integrate change into their lives in steps, which allow for greater opportunity for success.

What Is a SMART Goal?

S – Specific

M – Measurable

A – Action Oriented

R – Reasonable

T – Timeline

Some would say that a goal stating, “I will lose 25 lbs in three weeks” would qualify as a SMART goal. It is Specific and Measurable (25 lb weight loss), and it has stated Timeline (3 weeks), however our goal falls short of the other points.

A three-week time frame for losing 25 lbs is not Reasonable nor is it Action-oriented. The above stated goal would be difficult to reach and would not likely bring success. A SMART goal would be, “I will do resistance training with Terri/Melanie two times per week for one hour on Monday and Wednesday from 9:30 AM to 10:30 AM.” This goal is very Specific, Measurable, and is Action-oriented rather than results oriented. It is also Reasonable and has a very specific Timeline. Paired with a nutrition goal to support this training, the results would be fat loss/muscle gain. SMART? Yes!

As the current SMART goals are met each week, new goals are established which build on success and establish growing levels of challenge. I assist my client with creating and living into personalized SMART goals, and I can do the same for you. Contact me to assist you in creating your SMART goals to support you on your wellness and fitness journey.

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