Staying Active and Focus With The SMART Plan

staying active and focus with the SMART Plan

New Year’s resolutions. These resolutions have started a couple of centuries ago with the ancient Babylonians with different set of promises, that are completely different from our time. Now, a lot of people are making them and see it as a ”fresh start” for the year that is coming. We set goals and promises to motivate us to feel better (mentally and physically) but it doesn’t last for long…

The most commons ones are eating healthier, exercising more and saving money. It has been proven that more than 80% of persons that started a specific resolution fails before the beginning of March! This is due to what exactly? There’re many causes to that: lack of motivation, going back to their ”comfort zone”, etc… This is all due to a not setting their goals the good way.

A solution to this behavior is to use a method called the SMART Plan. Never heard of it before? Well, let me explain you how you can stay active and focus with the SMART plan for the year coming and so on. Don’t worry it is easier than it sounds. Let’s GO!

S.M.A.R.T. Plan Stands For…

The acronym SMART has some slight variations depending on of which type of goals you want to obtain. Here’s the most common:

S : Specific, Significant

M: Measurable, Meaningful

A: Achievable, Action-Oriented

R: Realist, Relevant, Reasonable, Result-Oriented

T: Tangible, Time-Based, Trackable

If you search the web, you will find more variations that can be more specific to the own goal(s).

Be Specific

If you set a goal, it need to be the most specific as possible. If you tell yourself ”I want to start exercising” or ”I want to get in shape”, these goals are not accurate at all. It is too vague and you will be promised to fail for sure. A real specific example would be ”I will lose 20 pounds” or ”I want to cut down my 5K time by 15 minutes”. You got the point?

Be Able To Measure It

Once you have set a specific goal you also need to measure it. Science tell us that if you don’t, it won’t work. It also a way to truly put cards on the table and see if you are really progressing or not.

For my self if I’m preparing for a half or full marathon, I always use my wearable to follow my progress. Any small progress would lead you to success long term and if it is measurable, it will increase the desire to get better or tweak it if something is wrong.

Another example would be for weight loss: you need a scale to measure where you start and where the going. Believe it or not, maybe person are scare to step on the scale (or by a private trainer) because they are scare to see how tall the mountain is to climb. It is normal to feel scare or ashamed but you need to start NOW and take ACTION. Once you’re able to measure it, you will know what need to be done to move forward.

Make It Achievable

Your goal need to attainable for you to succeed. If you set yourself to run a marathon but have never run any long distance runs it will be hard to achieve it. Settings yourself an achievable goal will also be more fun during the process.

It took me a couple of years before running my two marathons this year. I started small (5K), progressed (10K and 21K) and finally accomplished my goal (42.2K). From day one, I always had pleasure on any run that I did and that’s due to setting myself concrete achievable goals.

Be Realistic Toward Your Goal

You need to be focusing on something that make sense with the goal that want to achieve. Do you have the resources necessary to accomplished the goal? By example, if you wanna start practicing kickboxing, make sure you are financially able to pay for the annual fees. It seems simple but there’s a lot of people that can afford some type of sports and they stop going because of money.

Also, make sure that each goal that you have in mind are attainable and reasonable time-wise. It needs time and dedication to complete a specific goal. Make sure you incorporate the time needed to perform the actions toward the goal in the daily, weekly and monthly schedule. Write it down on the calendar or on a paper that you can look daily, this will help you on the long run.

Defined In Time

Some persons call it time-bound. Just deciding when you want to achieve something can motivate you to keep going. Time also need to be measurable, attainable and realistic. Are you setting yourself realistic deadlines to accomplish the goals and the actions that will lead you to the end goal?

Create Your Own SMART Plan

I hope this would guide to find the own perfect SMART plan. There is not a specific plan since everyone has different goals and will take different actions to achieve them. Same thing goes for the time. Some of you will HAVE to change some of their HABITS to find some space in their schedule. Parents will need to juggle between work and their kids but it is DOABLE.

I have a full time job and a 2-year-old kid and I found a way to practice enough to be able to accomplished my first two marathons in 2018! Once you have accomplished a goal, you feel awesome and proud. Everything you do in the life is for a feeling. Whenever it is good or bad.

So what are you waiting for? Believe in yourself, you will be surprise how far it will bring you. What will be the SMART Plan? Are you ready to set REAL long-term resolutions ? What will they be?

Please add a comment below and I will be sure to engage with you. If you guys have any questions feel free to ask.

I wish you the best holidays ever !

Stay strong and have a good one. Al

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About Alvaro ''Al'' Paez

I am a passionate fitness/wearable enthusiastic person who loves to share to the world, news and reviews about what I call fitness wearables. Ive been using wearables since many years and I found they can be a useful tool to improve your health, increase your fitness level and lose weight. There's a fitness wearable for every person. Let me show you the good path! Alvaro ''Al'' Paez.

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20 Comments on “Staying Active and Focus With The SMART Plan”

  1. What a timely article! Goal setting has always been something I loved doing, but I never knew there was a whole system in place to make those goals turn into reality! I really do agree with the steps here. I think one of the most important parts to setting any goal is being specific with what you want to accomplish and being realistic. Keep up the good work and thanks for this!

    1. Hi Eric! 

      I’m happy that you have learn something valuable with my post. I was in the position has many just recently. Not setting specific goals in a realistic way with a specific time frame. Not only fitness related but in all areas of my life. The system is general but can be narrow down to what you want to accomplish. That’s what I love of the SMART Plan. 

      Thanks for passing by. All the best. Al 

  2. Great information! I need to get right on your Insurance tips, I think I may be overpaying after reading your article. And the section on goal setting! just in time for the new year. I will set measurable goals! Get info on the difference of a Smartwatch V a Activity Tracker, Do you have a favorite? Thanks for the article on 5 things to know when I want to loose weight, Think I’ll get in shape for the new year!

    Thanks

    1. Hi Dennis, 

      Thank you for your warm comment! Don’t worry, you are not the only that is starting setting goals the good way. Like I said, there’s about 80% of the population that makes them but fail quickly. Once they are set and been measured, keep them in mind and writting them somewhere that you will look everyday or so. I’m getting a goals wall calendar to help me since I forgot to look into my phone enough. 

      For your smartwatch/fitness tracker question, I love my TomTom Spark 3 (fitness tracker). As for the smartwatch side, I prefer the Withings Steel HR Sport that is less expensive than the big ones (Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch).

      If you got more questions, please let me know. 

      Al 

  3. Hello,

    Great article on goal setting and how to effectively go about putting ourselves in the best position to accomplishsh them. The SMART plan-method is great and can be specific to the individual, group of people and situations.

    This will definitely be a method I incorporate to accomplish my goals from now on!

    Thanks for bringing the SMART method to goal setting to the forefront!

    Diane

    1. Dwilli! 

      Thank you for your positive comment. I’m happy it can help you for the near future. Setting goals are something that everyone need to do with a strategy in background. That will help you in the long run. Not just for a month or two. Let me know if you need any help finding your perfect SMART plan. Al

  4. I have already made some New Year resolutions. One is to exercise more. Even though you start seriously as the time goes, you fail to continue.

    It is good to start with a specific goal in mind.By doing that at least you could motivate yourself when feeling lazy. It is important to focus on the goal and try to achieve it despite many obstacle that you might face.

    I believe it is important for everyone to make goals regarding their health, fitness by setting goals at the beginning of the year.

    1. Hi Saj! 

      Thank you for your comment. You are right taking the time to manage your time with your goals always in mind is something that will help you mid to long term. I started doing that recently and I already see the benifits! Once you have a concrete plan, anything can be accomplished. 

  5. Creating smart resolutions is one of the smartest ideas I had heard in a long time. I had seen the SMART acronym and implemented it in work scenarios, in the past, and am delighted to see it applied (or suggested that it be applied) to one’s personal life. This isn’t the same as journaling, but it seems to serve the same purpose. It makes the abstract concrete–or, as the paradigm dictates, measurable. This is kind of how I operate with driving directions or lists of things to do or get from the store. Once I render the abstract idea somewhat concrete, by writing it down and making it something I can look at, I really no longer need the list; there’s something about the act of making the abstract a little less so that enables us to focus a little better on our objectives. Thanks very much for a thoughtful post.

    1. Hey Kevin, 

      Thank you so much for your comment. You got that right! Everyone successful has his own SMART plan and live by it every day without questions. Once you implement it on your life with any goals that you are setting, it’s like magic. You won’t derive from your path after. Specific goals that can be measured will make them concrete. This is good for any sphere of your life. Al

  6. I think I saw the “SMART” acronym or at least something very similar, while taking a business course at university. The only problem with it is that some new years resolutions  (usually the complicated or business dependent ones) just aren’t doable in the time frame that you initially believe. Not everything is rewarded in kind for the amount of honestly work put in, unfortunately. Sure, stuff like “learning to swim quickly” or “maintaining this specific diet” is fine, but things like “gain 2000 more subscribers on youtube before the year ends” may work out as realistic and achievable for the person, but that’s because they don’t fully grasp the factors involved in this and as such they are bound to be disappointed.

    1. Hi Caldero,

      It is definitely true when it comes to big goals like the ones that you are talking about. With the SMART plan, consistence is the key on each letter from the Smart Plan. It has being aknowledge by successful people their own way and it works for anyone. You seems to have understand my post for sure! All the best. Al 

  7. A perfect article for all of those embarking on a “new year’s resolution”. Utilising the smart plan or a version thereof will without doubt help. I’m a qualified PT and nutritionist and I have seen it far too often that people embark on something new, be that a diet or fitness plan without having measurable, achievable targets and as such invariably fail. I’ll be utilising this article with some clients in the coming weeks! Thanks again Kevin

    1. Hi Kevin, 

      Good stuff! If this can help you with your clientele, feel free to use it! I tried to show the SMART plan the easiest way possible so it can be used by the most people possible. There’s many versions of the SMART plan but it can become really confusing. I’m sure that your users will learn it fast and find their way to suceed long term. All th best. Al 

  8. Glad that I found your article just in time for my new year planning. 

    I have so many goals in mind and I guess I really have to sit down, focus, and plan them out with the SMART approach that you have shown us. 

    Sometimes I get too excited and ambitious when setting goal, and I ended up feeling defeated when I realise that my goal is too high for me to reach. Your article is a timely reminder that I have got to make it more realistic and time-bound!

    Thank you Alvaro, wish you a great year ahead!

    1. Hi Grace, 

      I am glad that this post gave you some insights on how to proceed to get success on what you want to work on. It’s no magic, just putting all cards on the table and make it happen specifically and in a realistic way. Once you get the twist, it will be a no-brainer. It will be like riding a bike! 🙂 Regards, Al 

  9. Setting yourself goals is important whatever the subject, but I think we all target bigger goals than we should really start with when it comes to fitness.

    We always want to lose more than we can healthily achieve. I like the way you have set out this way of setting out goals.  Definitely need to look into this, especially after Christmas.

    thanks

    1. Hi John, 

      Thank you for the comment. In the fitness world, you need to set your goals properly to be able to achieve them mid to long term. And wearables are there to help you measure your daily progress and gives you tips that will let you improve you fitness level with any type of workouts. You just need to find the good one for you. Using the SMART plan is a template that can be ”tweak” the way you want it depending on the area of your life that you want to get better. All the best! Al  

  10. I agree with you 100%!  The biggest thing for me is setting goals that are actually achievable and then coming up with a plan to achieve those goals.  I don’t make New Year’s resolutions.  I see that as setting myself up to fail.  I prefer to make ongoing goals through out the year, and with each goal I make, then I make a new one.  I do better this way for sure.

    1. That’s a good way too. You seems to have found a solution that keep you up to date for a long time. That’s what is the most important is that you have them always in mind or written with a specific method that works. Nothing thrown in the air. Thanks for the message 🙂 

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