But most of us are not worried about the Olympics. Instead, we want to get in better shape and live our healthiest, happiest lives. A lifetime goal for many people might be to lose a large amount of weight. This is certainly a worthwhile goal, but it’s also one that could take several years of your most committed effort.
Whatever your lifetime goal is, write it down now.
The Intermediate Goal
Now that you have your lifetime goal set, what are the steps you need to take to get there? These steps make up your intermediate goals and are the monthly and weekly standards that you need to hit.
If you’re Michael Phelps, it means getting to the pool for twice-a-day, 10 to 15,000 meter workouts, six days a week, in addition to resistance and plyometrics training four times a week. This is followed with careful monitoring of performance every month. These are all intermediate goals.
The idea is to chop down that huge gleaming goal in the sky into achievable segments. If you want to lose weight, you’ll have to become very adept at following your daily food intake and exercise.
An intermediate goal cannot be “I’m going to try to lose weight” or “I’ll work on getting to the gym more often.” Specificity is key: “On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, I’ll get to the gym and do X minutes of cardio and Y minutes of resistance. And I will increase that by 10 percent each month. And I will reduce my daily intake by Z calories.” All of these are effective intermediate goals.
Look at your lifetime goal and write down 2 to 3 intermediate goals that you should focus on each month or week.