So, how do you get from couch potato to mega athlete? How do you go from running a 10 km, to running your first marathon? The answer is simple; it all begins with setting a goal.
Here are ten benefits of goal setting.
- Goals provide focus.
There are hundreds of ways to get fit. They range all the way from endurance sports such as swimming, cycling and running, to team sports. Endurance sports create a unique opportunity for people to participate, whereas most team sports suppose an already existing skill set. With so many sport options, we need to pick one. So, for the purpose of this blog we will take Pete, who has just decided to do the 94.7 cycle ride.
- Goals bring information.
As Pete has decided to do 94.7, he places himself in a position where he needs information. This includes dates, what bike to ride, prices of equipment, nutrition required and training necessary and- wait… just how far is that again!? Fortunately the information is out there, and your goal will compel you to get it.
- Your goal will put you in contact with a whole new set of people.
One of the best things you can do is to join a club or squad. There are some great running, cycling and swimming clubs around. Training with friends really helps. It keeps you accountable.
- Goals provide motivation.
Your biggest challenge in training is often simply to get out of the door! A clear goal, that is visible, will help get you moving. Goals bring a healthy level of stress, that will get you across your threshold, and once that’s done the rest becomes easy.
- Goals change your perception of yourself.
Your view of yourself will determine where you go in life. The minute you set your goal, get on line and book for the event, you begin to change the way you see yourself. The transformation from a couch potato to a cyclist who can ride just under 100 km’s, begins first in the mind. Become a cyclist in your mind and your body will follow.
- Goals need to be progressive.
Once you have set the big one, in this case the 94.7 cycle challenge, you need to set some smaller ones. The first one might be to ride for 10 km’s without passing out. You will then slowly build these distances until you slay the big one.
- Goals need to be versatile.
Life happens and things go wrong. You will miss training sessions; you might even get ill before a race. Don’t let that throw you, there are more than enough events to participate in. Keep moving forward.
- Goals get your RAS (Reticular Activation System) going.
If you have ever decided to buy a certain car, your mind adjusts and begins to focus on that car. Suddenly it seems as if every second driver is driving the car you were looking at buying, thereby dashing your dream of being unique on the road. This phenomenom is known as RAS (Reticular Activation System), and what it means is that your eye manages with great accuracy to spot that which you are interested in. The same thing will happen to our brand new cyclist, Pete. Suddenly he is able to spot cyclists from a mile off, and slows down in parking lots to view bikes sitting on car racks. This in turn will help him to stay motivated.
- Keep your goal in front of you.
Change your screen saver to reflect your goal, write out your goal and place it where you can see it daily. Make a plan so that you are regularly reminded of your goal.
- Some pithy statements that might inspire you.
– Kites rise against the wind.
– Turtles need to stick their necks out in order to move forward.
– Rubber bands fly only when they are stretched.
Now it’s your turn- find a big goal and go for it!
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