Written By Joe Roy
Setting a goal is extremely important to your success in the gym. Goals will provide you with direction and motivation.
A few things to keep in mind when making goals:
What is a goal?
A goal is a specifically desired end state, expressed in the positive tense, which provides motivation and direction on the path to achievement – CrossFit Goal Setting Course
The goal must be specific and concise.
Example: I want to perform 25 consecutive kipping gymnastic pull ups.
The goal must be expressed in the positive tense.
Example: I will climb the rope, NOT I don’t want to fall off the rope
The goal must be realistic and achievable.
The goal must include a time frame that is challenging, yet realistic.
Example: I will perform/achieve/complete THIS by THIS DATE.
You have to be inspired by the goal, find the true reason as to why it is important for you to accomplish this goal.
Example: I will perform/achieve/complete THIS in order to be able to complete Fran as prescribed (RX).
Putting it all together, here is an example of a properly worded goal:
I will perform 25 consecutive gymnastics kipping pull ups by 1 June 2014.
What to do from here?
- Think of a goal that is realistic and inspires you.
- Find out where you stand today. Take the pull up example I keep referring to. If your goal is to complete more gymnastics kipping pull ups, then get on the bar and figure out how many you can do right now, that way you can set a realistic number for accomplishing your goal.
- Set your goal or goals.
- Set you timeline to achieve that goal.
- Write it down and make it public. You can do good ole FB if you want, but in addition to that, get creative. Write it down in your workout log, on your shoes, sweatbands etc. Post it on your dashboard in your car so you have to look at it when you go through the drive through or decide not to go to the gym after work. Making it public also makes it easier to hold yourself accountable to that goal. People will ask you where you are on your goal, if you have accomplished it yet etc. The other benefit is if everyone knows you are working towards pull ups, but all they see you do is socialize for 10 minutes before and 10 minutes after the workout each day…… hopefully someone is nice enough to light a fire under your butt!
- Come up with a plan on what you can/will do in order to achieve that goal (all of our coaches are happy to help).
The last thing I will touch on, which is directly related to setting goals is the power of your words. As Greg Amundson clearly explains during the CrossFit Goal Setting Course your thoughts become your words, which become your actions, then habits and eventually your destiny. Most of you have probably heard me quickly correct you or someone close by when they say “I cannot do that” I typically say “NOT YET” for instance, an athlete will say “I cannot lift that”, to which I try to quickly reply, NOT YET, but if you keep the bar close to your body on this next lift you will.” However, in reality they have already defeated themselves by thinking they cannot lift it, and then telling themselves and everyone around them they cannot lift it.
One the best examples I have of this is from 2012 when I was coaching a couple of our competitive athletes at an event in Orange County. One of the workouts began with the athlete running through tires. The athlete was required to place one foot in every tire in order to move on to the next portion of the workout. As I was waiting near the starting line with one of our athletes, a female competitor from a different affiliate was next to us in her lane lined up ready begin the workout. She took a big deep breath and stated out loud, and with a very concerned look on her face, “I know I’m going to trip and fall on these tires.” A few short moments later 3..2.1.. GO, I look up and there is this girl about half way through the tires lying flat on her face as all the other athletes passed right by her. Her thoughts became her words, her words became her actions. She told herself she was going to trip and fall, she told everyone else she was going to trip and fall and she did not disappoint! Out of the 100+ athletes competing that day she was the only one I saw who tripped and fell during that event.
Try coming into the gym for the next couple of weeks and try replacing “I cannot” with a loud and confident I CAN DO THAT, or I GOT THIS. Sure, people might say who is the crazy guy or girl who talks to themselves when they are working out… But who really cares? See what happens. You will be surprised.
If you are having trouble with the wording of your goals or not sure how to put it in positive tense, or any other questions please ask me or send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org