Hi friends! Part of what I do as a coach is lead online fitness accountability groups. Some people choose to do one group for about a month and then stop. Others continue to join challenge groups to stay on track with their goals. One of my friends who has done a few groups recently asked me how she would know when she’s “done.”
It’s a tough question, and I’ll try to answer it the best that I can.
The first answer is, of course, “I don’t know!” I can’t tell you when you’ve achieved YOUR GOAL. Because it’s YOURS, not mine.
But I think there’s something else behind her question. I think a lot of people wonder when they’ve done enough towards their health and fitness. Like, you lost 10 pounds…great, but should you lose another 10? How can you tell? How do you know when you’ve achieved enough? How do you know if you’ve gone too far?
Well, it’s not a big secret…
The number one, most important question to ask is this: Overall, do I feel better than I did before I achieved this goal?
Sounds simple, but it’s not!
If you’re overweight, you probably WILL feel better after losing some pounds. But, losing weight or gaining muscle doesn’t automatically mean that you’ll feel better. If you pushed yourself too hard and got injured, you might actually feel worse than when you started!
Now, notice how I said “overall.” Because there will be times in your fitness journey that you will NOT feel good. You’ll be tired and achy and unmotivated. It happens to everyone. But the good days should outweigh the bad. You should feel good more often than you feel crappy – and if that’s not the case, it’s a good indication that you need to adjust your goals or your methods.
You have to constantly check in with yourself, asking yourself that question, to make sure that you’re staying on a HEALTHY track and not going overboard.
I think there’s another important point to address here too. We base a lot of goals on physical appearance – before and after photos and measurements, etc. Those things are important, but I want to make this very clear: Your health and fitness goals should NOT be based solely on pounds and inches! Weight and size are only ONE indicator of health. You can’t neglect all the other areas!
Think about all the things going on inside your body right now. Digestion! Circulation! A brain that has somehow learned to read words on a page! Those things should be just as important as how much you can lift or the size of your waist.
If you’re creating goals that support your WHOLE health, not just your appearance, you can’t go wrong.
The flip side is this: If you’re creating goals for your overall health – you’re NEVER done! That might sound depressing, but it’s not. It means that you always have the opportunity to feel better than you do today.
I’ve achieved so much in my health and fitness journey over the past 5 years. I can look back and appreciate how far I’ve come. But I don’t feel like I’ve “arrived” at the station marked “Healthy.” As corny as it may sound, “healthy” is the name of the train that you’re riding, not the stations along the way.
It really is all about the journey, not the destinations!