Let's talk about goals. Through my training as a speech pathologist and personal trainer, I have learned that being goal oriented is incredibly important. Having a goal in mind can help motivate you to work harder and stay focused, but I have also learned that that can be a double-edged sword. If goals in mind are way too difficult, motivation can waver when results are not as fast as you would like. Writing appropriate goals can be challenging and a bit of a downer if you're anything like me and want instant gratification! Most people have goals that are too broad ("I want to get fit!" "I want to tone!") or unattainable ("I want to lose 10 pounds this week!" "I want to be a fitness model in a month!").
Listen: We all want results, and we all want them now. I get it, I was that way. However, that's just not how the human body works. Many professions (both of mine included) use the SMART Goal model. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. This means that goals have to be thought out. For example "I want to get fit!" is not a SMART goal, but "I want to increase my bicep curl weight by 5 percent in two months" is SMART. "I want to get skinny" is not SMART, but "I want to decrease my body fat percentage by 2 percent in 1 month" is SMART. See the difference? Thinking this way can help narrow your vision of what you really want.
In addition to SMART goals, some people even add -ER for Evaluate and Reevaluate. Evaluation of your progress is incredibly important and, in my opinion, is a crucial part of any fitness plan. We all look at ourselves in the mirror every day, and when we are working toward a goal, it can difficult to take an objective stance every morning. Taking measurements, progress pictures, measuring body fat percent once a month or so can be great ways see where your progress stands. This has been incredibly helpful in my journey toward fitness and hopefully it can help you too!
Try not to focus on those "trouble areas" every day. Your body is amazing, no matter what it looks like today. Down on yourself? Give yourself a compliment and move on. You rock, I swear!
One of my recent fitness goals is to improve my arm strength by increasing weight by 5 percent for 10 reps for each muscle group in the next month (that includes biceps, triceps and deltoids). Here is my most recent arm and shoulder workout. It includes giant sets, which are completed by doing three exercises back to back to back with no rest between. These giant sets include both multi-muscle group sets and same muscle group sets to vary the amount of tension each muscle is under.
Complete 10-12 reps of each exercise (unless noted) for three sets. Rest for one complete minute between sets.
Kettle Bell Swings
Single Arm Kettle Bell Jerk and Press
Overhead Shoulder Press
Single Arm Cable Curl
Cable Hammer Curl with rope attachment
Power tube curls 30s
Single Arm Cable Tricep Extension
Tricep Extension with rope attachment
Power tube kickback 30s
Kettlebell swing and punch
Power Tube Upright Row 30s