Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Setting S-M-A-R-T Goals for 2010

Hard to believe it's almost 2010..just a few more weeks. If you haven't done so already, NOW is the time to be setting your goals for 2010. But, it's not enough just to make a generic goal- like I want to get stronger and ride faster (who doesn't), you should make your goal more specific. Make your goal realistic, specific and measurable.
Here is an acronym (S-M-A-R-T) I saw while reading an article the other day that will help you remember what's important in creating your goal(s) for 2010. And, there is nothing wrong with making multiple goals. The article was written in some Chesapeake Bay magazine (of all places)- can't remember which. (But, at least I remembered the acronym.) The article didn't apply to cycling per se, but you can easily apply it as follows:
S- Specific- be specific with your goal. Do you want to podium? Do you want to move up from Cat 5 to Cat 4? Do you want to just hang with the pack? Do you want to hang on your local group ride?

M- Measurable- make your goal measurable. Do you want to break the hour mark in a 40k TT? Do you want to improve your FTP from 290w to 300w? Do you want to average 250w on your group rides?

A- Attainable- here's the one that is abused the most. Do NOT make a goal that is NOT attainable. You're only setting yourself up for failure if you don't. Trust me, it's a lot easier to make an attainable goal, achieve it...and make another one than to make a lofty goal that you can't attain. We all want to be a Cat 1 Pro (even though some of us say we don't) but don't make that goal if it's not attainable. And, don't say my goal is "to be a BETTER sprinter" when you know damn well you don't have a fast twitch muscle fiber in your body. I hear that all the time. Get over're NEVER going to be a sprinter. Sorry!

R- Relevant- I'm not quite sure how this applies since it's just common sense to me. Why wouldn't I make a relevant goal. i.e. Why would a goal be to podium if I don't race? Well, I suppose that's the problem..some people don't use common sense. I suppose it almost goes hand-in-hand with my example above (attainable) about being a better sprinter if it's not in the cards.

T- Time-bound- I like this one the best. I think it's one of the most important. What good is making a goal if you don't have a date to attain that goal by? That's the whole point in making a gives you something to work towards, some motivation to help you attain. And, be specific with the date. Don't just say I want to move up from Cat 5 to 4 this summer. When this summer? June, July, August? Even if you're not sure about the month at least you can say at the beginning of the summer or mid-summer, or by the end of the summer.

Make a goal for 2010...and be S-M-A-R-T about it! Power ON! Coach Rob

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