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Tuesday, 20 December 2011

So have we any new year resolutioners out there?

I don't really set goals at new year that much.  Most of my goals for 2012 where already set earlier this year (I'm aiming at increasing my deadlift & squat by a reasonable amount over the next year- actually in the case of the squat it's the high end of reasonable as I am a rubbish squatter, but there you go might as well aim high!).
Anyway, have you got goals to set for 2012?  If so let's have them.  Here's some ideas to help you reach those goals.

Write it down:

Put it somewhere you can see it regularly.  I'm aiming at 185Kg squat, which is my toughest goal as I'm not a natural squatter & it will be about 2.5x bodyweight lift for me so it may take more than 12 months to get there?  Anyway to 'remind me' I've redesigned my wallpaper on the computer, I went & grabbed a load of guys squatting big weights, wrote a big, red 185 in thumping HUGE numbers over it, so everytime I look at the computer I see the number 185 & squats, but you could put something on your fridge, put something by your bedroom lamp, whatever, but somewhere you'll read it.
Also make sure you keep your goals, your goals (I stole that line from Dan John), if you are trying to lose fat, then suddenly trying out the latest powerlifting training from Eastern Europe may not be the best thing in the world for your goal- if you are anything like me I get excited when I read new stuff about training & yes I want to try it out..but you can't reach your goals if you are swapping stuff up all the time, sticking to a plan is the best method.  Before making any change go back to that thing you wrote out (your goal), does this change move you towards or away from your goal?  Answer that before you make any change (yes this is a tough one to do, I know!).
Here are some quick & rough rules for achieving your goals.

If you're looking to lose fat then 80% of the effort should actually go into the food journal, 15% into training & 5% recovery (prehab/rehab, recovery etc).  That's right, you will get better results by really focussing on what you're eating & writing everything down, then seeing how things affect you.  This % is the starting place of your diet, I don't think you can (or should) keep a food journal forever, but this gets you going correctly & you can actually see what you eat, calories etc, it leads you towards a decent eating plan.  If you have a lot of weight to lose (say a year or more of dieting) then look at returning to a food log once a quarter or every 6 months at least & write out a week & see where you are.  This is actually good practice for everyone, just to see the amount of junk you are eating & ways to tidy up your diet to move towards those goals.

Mass gainers:
70% should be focussed upon eating more & trying to keep those calories as clean as possible, again only 20% should be on your training.  Many people can train hard, but many fail on eating enough to grow, especially on a vegan diet which can be less calorie dense than a typical meat eaters diet, the rest fail on the other 10% which is recovery, so sleep, stretching, self myofascial release, massage, pre-hab/rehab etc, they simply don't do it or enough of it.

80% sports specific skills, so playing the game, practising specific skills etc, 10% strength training, 10% other (recovery planning, rehab/prehab, massage, self myofascial release etc).  Yes 80% should be doing something directly related to your sport.

Goal setting:
Goal setting is important.  You need to set some numbers & dates for goals if you can.  Do not just say  "I want to be slim for the beach this year".  That is not a goal, it is a vague dream.  A goal is "I want to lose 10 pounds of fat by June 1st 2012".  Now you have a goal, you can work backwards & set up a plan to hit that goal.

Obviously these are rough guidelines as there will be some athletes who need to gain muscle mass, or dieters who are trying to hit a weight class in a contest, those are outside these general guidelines, but I thought I'd write some very rough outlines about how you should be thinking about those goals right now, so you can plan them, not just waste your time with vague dreams.

One final tip is announcing your goals makes them MUCH more likely to come true, so why not pop your goals up on here right now (I did, so how about you?), then you will be loads more likely to hit that goal in 2012...if you can't do that then consider - Is the goal realistic?  Do I REALLY want it?  Because if you can't even say it out loud, then you're unlikely to have the mindset to achieve it!

With all that said get your goals set now, have a great holiday season, then get on that plan when the clock chimes 12 on the first day of 2012!

1 comment:

Joe said...

It is an important point to set goals and follow through. When we write them down we are constantly reminded of them, increasing the chances of us being successful in accomplishing them. Nice post!