The Table Top
This is exercise works the arms, particularly the back of the arms, shoulders, back, legs and bum. A great all round toner!
- Start with your legs positioned close to your bum and hands pointing out to the side.
- Push up until your back is straight , so you look like a table (hence the name)
- Breathe out as you go up, and in as you go down
In the first part of this series I discussed the advantages of setting a goal and how doing so would greatly increase your chances of losing weight for your wedding day. In this post, I’m going to show you how the elements of an effective goal; the things you need to consider to make your goal as powerful as possible.
To do this we’re going to the acronym S.M.A.R.T, which conveniently makes all the elements easy to remember. It stands for:
Let’s look at each one in turn:
Do you remember making lists of presents you wanted for your birthday when you were a kid? I’d wager that you were super specific. You wrote down exactly what you wanted, down to the type and colour. You couldn’t leave the important details of your gifts at the mercy of your parents, so you gave them as much help as possible to make sure you got what you wanted
In the same way, by being specific with your goal, you’re much more likely to get what you want. The clearer the goal, the more energy you’re able to pour into it.
Most importantly, being specific also allows you to know when you’ve actually achieved your goal. Decide on a specific amount of weight you’d like to lose, or a number of dress sizes you’d like to drop and head towards that. You then have an end point at which you can say ‘I’ve done it’ and can happy with your achievements. Being vague leaves things open-ended and prevents you from being happy with your success, simply because you didn’t define what success would be.
Being able to measure your goal allows you to keep track of your progress. It enables you to see if what you’re doing is actually working and gives you a chance to celebrate when it does. You don’t achieve a goal in one go, waking up one day to find you’ve reached it; but rather in small steps which come together to represent the accomplishment of that goal.
In the case of looking great for your wedding day, you look your very best by losing half a kilo or half an inch at a time. Each small change is a milestone and a small win that enables you to feel happy, proud and also keeps you motivated on your way to achieving your main goal.
This ensures that your goal is something that you can actually achieve. Nothing saps your motivation faster than a goal you feel is impossible to achieve. Setting an achievable goal requires finding a balance between setting a small goal that’s too easy to achieve and one which is likely to be unachievable. A good goal strikes this balance by being one that is challenging and will push you, but you’re able to achieve.
Achievability is closely tied to the T in S.M.A.R.T; the time factor of the goal. For example, a goal that would be challenging if you had a year to achieve it may become next to impossible if you have 3 months. Taking how much time you have into account is vital when setting a goal that’s achievable and that you can really sink your teeth into.
This is the ‘why’ of the goal; how important it is for you to accomplish it. How relevant is the goal to where you want to be? In other words, is it something you really want or something that would merely be ‘nice to have’? Is it something you’re willing to work for? Is it something you’re going to stick with when you encounter a setback? These are all questions which determine the goal’s relevance. Deciding on how relevant the goal is helps you decide ahead of time if it’s something you really want.
For a goal to be truly effective it needs to have a deadline; a time span in which it needs to be done. Things that don’t have a deadline often don’t get done at all. A deadline creates a sense of urgency and it’s that urgency that can make all the difference with you reaching your goal.
As a bride-to-be, the great news is, you do a have a specific time in which you need to lose weight and look good; it’s called your wedding day! You’ve booked the venue, told people to save the date and sent out invitations. Everyone will be there, cameras and all. But as opposed to being a deadline for getting into that dress, your wedding day is a lifeline. It adds a tremendous amount of purpose to your goal and gives you the extra motivation to succeed. It provides all the relevance you’re ever going to need. It’s the great advantage you have as a bride-to-be and is what separates you from other women who may also be attempting to lose weight.
Stay tuned for the third and final part of this series in which I discuss how breaking your goal down makes achieving it easier.
The Benefits of Eggs
When it comes to a healthy breakfast, there are few better choices than the humble and unassuming egg. It’s incredible that so much goodness can be packed into something so small.
The first thing that makes them so great for you is their protein content. Eggs are known as a complete source of protein, which means they are one of few kinds of food that contain all 9 essential amino acids (quinoa is another). Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and are used in building and repairing of the cells in your body. This is particularly important for after your exercise when your muscles are in need of repair. An adequate supply of protein is also vital for the health of your skin, hair and nails.
Eggs are also a valuable source of vitamins and minerals including vitamins A, D and an array of B vitamins. They are a particularly great source of the mineral sulphur which also makes your hair and nails look radiant.
In addition to their nutritional value, eggs are great because they are so versatile. They can be boiled, poached or scrambled; which each option being equally delicious and quick. If you happen to have more time in the morning, they can be combined with any number of vegetables and other ingredients to make a healthy and delicious omelette.
The squat is a great for exercise for sculpting your legs and shaping your bum
- Feet hip width apart and pointing as forward as possible.
- Press your heels into the ground and keep them down throughout the movement. This ensures involves more of your legs in the exercise.
- Try not to let your knees buckle inwards or outwards
- Bend your knees until your bum is parallel to the floor. You’ll roughly be at a 90 degree angle
- Tense your stomach muscles and keep your chest up. This helps to keep your back straight
- Breathe in as you go lower, and out as you rise
This will have your legs and bum looking fabulous in no time – Enjoy!
So, why set a goal?
If you want to guarantee you look your very best on your big day, then deciding that you’re going to ‘lose some weight’ just isn’t enough. To truly ensure that it happens, you need to set a goal.
The first reason is that setting a goal focuses your mind and energy. Initially by creating clarity on what you want and then what you have to do to achieve it. Without a goal, your mind has nothing to focus on and will tend to settle for whatever’s easiest and most convenient. But in many cases what’s convenient doesn’t aid your aspiration for looking great in your gown. For instance, it’s often way convenient to stay in bed instead of waking up a little earlier to exercise. And it’s often more convenient to buy something unhealthy and pre-prepared, rather than preparing something healthy from scratch.
This all stems from the fact that simply deciding that you’re going to lose some weight is just too vague. And despite your best intentions, this vagueness can leave you wondering around aimlessly and not achieving much. This leads to frustration, disappointment and a lack of results instead of the progress you desire and so richly deserve.
Secondly, without a goal, how will you know when you have what you want? How will you know when you’ve actually lost enough weight or toned up enough? Without a goal, you run the serious risk of never being satisfied; you have nothing to compare your progress and results against. Setting a goal to lose a certain amount of weight or dress sizes gives you a measurable end point at which you know whether you’ve achieved it or not. Not having a goal can bring out the perfectionist in you, where you’re continually striving for something unattainable because you haven’t defined it.
In the next part of this series, I’m going to take you through the simplest way to create an effective goal using the S.M.A.R.T framework.
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