If you have tried to get in shape, you’ve also undoubtedly set goals for yourself. They may have been a success, but sticking to them has been a challenge. It’s a reality for anyone who wants to get results. If they haven’t been a success, you’ve more than likely given up on the idea completely. However, you shouldn’t. Getting in shape is good for you.

Apart from how getting in shape makes you feel, setting goals and completing them provides so much gratification. However, setting goals and sticking to them for most of us is not as straightforward as we wish it would be. Until now. Here is a step by step process of how to set goals on how to get fit and stick to them.

Visualise the end-game

Whatever goals you set, you need to see what the outcome looks like. So if you would like to have muscles the size of a bolder, you need to first imagine it. Doing so allows you to create a mind map.

Write your goals down or have a record

We all operate differently. You don’t necessarily need to have sticky notes of your objectives, but you must at least have some way of logging progress, or measuring your success. If this is daunting, then create a broad range of goals such as being able to go for a run every day, or taking long walks or hikes regularly.

If it’s broad, then also understand that results will take longer. What’s more, you might want to leave behind goals that require you to lose a specific number of calories a day, and rather just see where it takes you.

Setup a strategy that you enjoy

Getting in shape doesn’t mean tearing a ligament, or eating tasteless food. This is where some get it completely wrong. If you enjoy cycling slowly, then just cycle, and at your own pace. Your strategy shouldn’t leave you feeling broken if that is going to act as a deterrent. And if it does leave you feeling out of it, you should also feel as if it was worth it. If you don’t, then you’re likely going to give up on it.

But be realistic

What most of us fail to realise is that we tend to have too many expectations from ourselves. Visualising the outcome should come with managing expectations. This means you should really look at what you want to achieve and realistically anticipate how long it will take. Try to imagine all the challenges you will encounter, and what might veer you off course. This might help you set a more realistic mind map of the objective.

Be easy on yourself

We all want instant gratification. But in reality, this doesn’t work, especially when we’re trying to get in shape. When we don’t see results, we’re often hard on ourselves. Some may resort to very extreme measures that make the process so uncomfortable that they give up eventually or are too traumatized to enjoy the results.

With this in mind, always take it easy on yourself. This also includes being realistic. In saying that, we mean you shouldn’t expect yourself to just get up and get fit. The process is ongoing, and requires you to work at your own pace. Give yourself time to adjust to the new regimen – there will be more summers, especially if you try get in shape, while doing what you enjoy, and stick to the goals you have set for yourself. Lastly, it’s not a competition – it’s about you and no one else.