The difference between setting goals and achieving them

Last Sunday I mentioned on Facebook that I had achieved my ‘first fitness’ goal of 2015 – completing the Wangaratta Half Marathon.  It was a great local event and although a tad warm – a fun morning out.

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Although running may not be your ‘thing’, the process I used to achieve this goal can be applied to almost any situation.  This goal was not a ‘New Year Resolution’, and was not an ‘end goal, but formed part of the ‘bigger picture’ – my wellness vision.

I set this goal back in October some time, as a step towards a bigger goal I have set myself for September this year.  It was a SMART goal, in that it was Specific (i.e. completing the Wangaratta Half Marathon); Achievable (I had already completed a number of Half Marathons) Realistic (I had 4 months to prepare) and Time Bound (the event was 28 February 2015).

Written down on paper all of that sounded great, but how was I going to achieve it?  Over the past three years I haven’t trained from approximately October to March (too many magpies, too many festivities, too hot and no race goal until about May).  How was this year going to be different?  How was I going to put this goal into action?

Each week I had a running plan that set out what I needed to achieve on each particular day.  All well and good, but ‘life’ happens and usually doesn’t revolve around me, so before the start of each week – usually Saturday or Sunday, I identified as many obstacles I might face as I could (family commitments / work commitments / don’t like mornings / extra hot weather etc). – and worked out strategies to overcome them (swapping training days, negotiating pick ups and drop offs with my husband etc).

Again this is all sounds great, but despite best laid plans life also likes to throw you curve balls .  During this time I had to work around: unexpected high workloads at work; studying 3 courses; having a house full of family for Christmas; having only one car and having to car pool (which is a bit of a juggle when public transport doesn’t exist); family holidays; and injuring my knee at a music festival.  Again each week I would look at my week and plan around these obstacles and others, and develop strategies and adjust things as best I could.  If I tried a strategy and it didn’t work, I would reassess and use a different strategy next week, and of course what worked one week didn’t always work the next.

Some times despite the best laid plans and strategies I just couldn’t stick to the plan 10% let alone 100%, but by having a weekly plan and goal, as well as longer term goals and wellness vision, I was able to keep the bigger picture in mind and just keep chipping away.

The outcome of sticking to this plan and chipping away saw me run 270km this summer, compared with running only 26km last summer. Although this is less than I had planned back in October, it puts me well and truly ahead of where I was last year, and on track to achieve my next goal in May.  Another added bonus is that I now love my mornings runs and have made running something I do 12 months of the year not just 7!

 

strive

 

This process of setting a vision, goals and weekly plans complete with strategies to over come obstacles is all a part of the Wellness Coaching process.  It is entirely individualised to you and your circumstances (even if that includes not running due to magpie season!). Together we capture and develop your wellness vision, that is, what your ultimate healthiest life looks like, and then explore the obstacles you may face and the strengths you possess to over come them.  Together we then set 2 – 3 three month SMART goals that will take the steps towards achieving your vision.  Each week together we look at 2 – 3 SMART steps you can take towards achieving each three month goal, keeping in mind your obstacles and your strengths to overcome them.  It is 100% personalised based on you, your vision, your circumstances and your strengths.  This wholistic approach to goal setting provides accountability, order, clarity, challenge, small steps and ultimately SUCCESS.

If this sounds like something you may be interested – give me a call or send me an email and we can discuss how wellness coaching can help you.

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