“You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems. Your goal is your desired outcome. Your system is the collection of daily habits that will get you there. This year, spend less time focusing on outcomes and more time focusing on the habits that precede the results.” -James Clear
I want to piggy pack of our last blog (HERE) where we talked about how not to set crappy New Year’s Resolutions, how to properly set a resolution or goal, that you CAN achieve, not a goal that is just a pleasant daydream that you’ll never do.
We take goal-setting a bit more serious here at RTC because there is a lot of power in ACHIEVING a goal. It motivates us, you, to do more, think bigger, be challenged, and start becoming the person that you envision yourself in becoming.
Our system for goal setting has three parts:
- Set SMART goals (HERE)
- Decide on 3-month goals (read the book the 12 week year if you want to learn more about that) that’s a smaller part of your 12-month goal.
- Focus on HABITS that will get you to your 12-week goal
Habits are what make the goals possible; habits are the ‘how’ behind your goal.
Having a goal is great, but what kind of habits are you going to need to achieve that goal? If you’re not sure what kind of habits you need, think about what a day in the life looks like for someone that has done what you want to achieve; that will give you a starting point.
Let me give you an example of what I mean
Going back to our previous blog (HERE), let’s say the goal is to lose 50lbs this year. Losing 50lbs is the outcome that you want, now HOW are you going to get there.
Following the system, we are going to break that up into a 12-week goal, which is about 15lbs in 12 weeks.
The day to day habits that someone who has lost 50lbs in one year, or 15lbs in 12 weeks, most likely does the following;
- Track food every day or every other day
- Workout 4-5xweek with a goal to burn 700cals/workout
- Eat out only 1xweek
- Meal prep two meals a day
- Sleep at least 7 hours a night
- Fast for one full day a week.
Nothing crazy, most of this you probably already know, but I want you to think of it this way.
Imagine you are 50lbs overweight. What do you think would happen if you changed your day to day habits with some of the ones from above? You went from not working out to working out 4xweek, you started tracking your food and see EXACTLY what you are eating, or not eating. That one day a week, you decide to give your body a break from food for 24 hours, and you started going to bed at 9pm to get at least 7 full hours of sleep. You meal prep two meals a day so your less likely to eat out and lunch, AND when you do eat out, its only 1xweek.
Think you’ll lose some of that weight if your weeks had each one of those habits? Bet so.
That habit, or habits, should be your focus for the next three months.
The great thing is that it doesn’t take many habits to get started from my experience focusing on 1-3 habits every 12 weeks is PLENTY to achieve most goals and change lives.
Example Goals and Their Habits
I’m going to list out a few goals and some habits to get you started. Some of these may apply directly to you; others may not. Some of these are habits that are listed are ones that I’ve helped some RTC members develop to get to their goal; some may only requite ONE habit change while others may require more.
Again these are just examples; take what you want from them, some may work for you, and you may need to think of others.
Goal: Lose 50lbs this year.
- Workout 4xweek
- Meal prep two meals a day
- Fast for one full day each week.
- Eat out only 1xweek
- Sleep a min of 7 hours each night
Goal: Run a marathon this year
- Start by running every other day
- No processed foods the day of your workouts
- Strength training 3xweek
- Two days a week for stretching only
Goal: Do a bodyweight pull-up
- Start our HFT pull-up program (HERE) 4xweek
- Meal prep two meals a day (being lighter and leaner helps for a pull-up)
Goal: Gain 20lbs of muscle this year
- Eat 4000-5000 cals a day
- Sleep a min of 8 hours each day
- Strength train 4xweek.
Something to note: Each one of these goals is part of the SMART system. These are specific, measurable, and timely. Now, if the goal is to be in the best shape of your life or look sexy AF (which is a great goal IMO), then follow the SMART system to narrow that down to something you can measure.
The habits that you choose are particular to you; some people that are already strength training 4xweek may need a different habit to lose their weight vs. someone who is not doing any kind of strength training.
So, when you choose your habits, chose something that you know is doable for you and your particular goal, BUT is also going to challenge you to be better.
List of habits that can help towards any fitness goal
- Track food every day OR every other day
- Workout every other day or 4xweek
- Min of 5,000 steps a day
- Sweat for 30min a day
- Sleep a min of 7 hours
- Strength train 3xweek
- Cardio/conditioning workouts 3xweek
- Stretch for 10min a day
Imagine what your life, or your health and physique, would look like if each day or week you did each one of these habits. Different? Better?
Sum it up…
Shooting you from the hip here, if you want to have the best chance of success in getting to your near year goal, then focus on habits. Pick 1-3 habits, and that’s it.
Live that way until you no longer have to think about it, it’s second nature, it’s just life, once you get there THEN you can focus on the next set of habits.
Think of it this way…
…the life you’re living right now is the result of day to day habits, want to change your life?
Change your habits.
In Health and Awesomeness,
Travis Merritt, BS, CPT, is the Owner of Rowlett Transformation Center in Rowlett, TX.
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