Without doubt it's the thing I hear most. 'I am lacking motivation at the minute.' A sentence I was using myself just a few weeks ago. Since completing the Ironman I was seriously lacking any motivation to train, I would be aimlessly walking round the gym and eating whatever I fancied. But that's been flipped on it's head, and here's how...
Goal setting is a well known term. We think of goal setting as a way to measure our success, either we hit our goal or we don't, we win or lose, we get the bonus or we don't. This is what's known as an outcome goal, one that is completely determined on the success or failure to hit a specific target. I believe it is important to have an outcome goal, it ensures that we can plan a path to get there which leads me on to process goals.
Process goals are less common, but in fact, are proven to produce much better adherence than outcome goals. A study found in the international journal of sport and exercise psychology which tested 60 recreational exercises who were split randomly between process goals or outcome goals concluded...
'Repeated Measures ANOVA results indicated that the participants in the process goal group scored significantly higher interest/enjoyment and perceived choice, significantly lower pressure/tension, and had significantly greater adherence compared to the outcome goal and control groups.'
I used process goals in my Ironman training, each week I would set a target of time spent in each discipline. I would mark it green if I hit the target, amber if I was close, or red if I didn't. This process allowed to to detach myself from the end outcome goal, and focus on the process of how to get there. See my first 12 week of training below. (This was during lockdown when pools and lakes were closed.)
So how can you create a process goal to keep you motivated to exercise for 1 year? Follow these steps.
Give this a go and if you're struggling with it, send me an email on email@example.com , I love talking about goals and would be happy to help!