Many of us set resolutions every New Year’s Day. But if your resolution is too broad or doesn’t have a deadline, it is much easier to abandon or forget it. As the saying goes, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.”
This year, stick to your resolutions using the SMART goal structure. This method will help you clarify your wishes by turning your goal into actionable items, providing you with an outline for success.
Make sure your goal is simple and well defined. Setting more focused mini-goals will help you take small steps toward your overall goal.
SET YOUR GOAL: My mini-goal is to incorporate short sprints into every run.
CHECK YOURSELF: How will this help me run a faster 5k time?
Make sure that your goal contains criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of the goal.
SET YOUR GOAL: To reach my goal, I will run for 30 minutes, 4 times a week.
CHECK YOURSELF: How will I measure whether I am on track to meet my goal? (List at least two indicators.)
The goal should challenge you but be obtainable in a manageable time frame.
SET YOUR GOAL: I will achieve my goal by following a speed training running plan.
CHECK YOURSELF: Is it within my reach? Do I have the resources I need to accomplish this mini-goal?
Make sure the goal you’ve chosen matters to you.
SET YOUR GOAL: I am doing this in order to improve my overall health and feel proud of my 5k time.
ASK YOURSELF: What is the reason, purpose, or benefit of accomplishing the goal? Is now the right time for you to work toward this goal?
Make sure to be specific when setting a target date.
SET YOUR GOAL: In 60 days, I will be able to beat my previous 5k time.
ASK YOURSELF: Is this enough time to reach my goal? Did I give myself too much time for this goal?