Setting and reaching a movement goal can feel like an overwhelming task. Here are 5 strategies to help you make movement the goal you don’t break:
1. Make your goal realistic
If you’ve set a goal of incorporating intentional movement into your daily routine, take it a step further and follow the SMART acronym to make it realistic. Your goal should be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-based. The goal turned ‘SMART’ would be incorporating a 10-minute walk at lunch time during every weekday for 8 weeks.
2. Focus on creating a healthy relationship with movement
Here are two truths:
1. Movement has absolutely nothing to do with how your body looks.
2. Movement is an incredibly powerful tool that can improve how you feel.
Keep these truths in mind when setting your movement goal and set it based on how you feel, rather than how you look. Take note of how you feel before, during, and after completing the first day of your goal (we recommend writing it down somewhere). You can use this check-in to reflect on changes in how you feel over the duration of reaching your goal.
3. Set up a system that makes it EASY
After setting a realistic movement goal, take a moment to identify what the biggest hurdles are going to be. If you’ve struggled to find time to get moving and your goal is to do a 5-minute workout each day, treat it like an appointment you can’t miss or reschedule. Plan ahead and block a daily 5-minute appointment in your calendar for the entire month.
4. Get a support system
Motivation fades over time, so it’s important to have a strong support network in place. Whether it’s an online community that shares a common goal, an accountability buddy, or a coach — find what works for you and lean in when you need encouragement.
If you’re looking for an online community, check out our Just Move Facebook group!
5. Start small
Studies show that setting smaller, highly-achievable goals help reach your overarching goal. So, set yourself up for success by breaking your overall movement goal down into smaller steps.
For example, if your overall goal is to incorporate 30 minutes of intentional movement into your daily routine, set a smaller goal of 5 minutes. Once you achieve this consistently for 2 months (on average, it takes 66 days to form a habit!), increase the goal to 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, and so on until you reach your overall goal.
A gentle reminder: A movement goal doesn’t have to be “all or nothing”. You don’t have to go “all-in” and sacrifice your wellbeing to reach it. If you feel miserable trying to reach your goal or that the goal no longer serves you, it’s okay to re-evaluate and change your method or your goal. On the flip side of the coin, it’s okay if you fall down. You don’t have to scrap the entire goal just because you have to take a break. Take a breath and try again when you are ready.