Use the SMART objectives tool to achieve goals
FOLLOWING the success of the London 2012 Olympic Games, local and inspired residents are being encouraged to be SMART about their fitness goals.
SMART, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time bound, is a tool traditionally used to set business objectives but the Torbay Healthy Lifestyles team, who support local people to change their lifestyles for the good, are encouraging people to use the tool to reach their very own lifestyle goals.
Richard Merrifield, healthy lifestyles team manager, Torbay and Southern Devon Health and Care NHS Trust said: "This year's Olympics and Paralympics games were spectacular and I think Britain's success has inspired us all to get more active.
"Becoming the next Mo Farah or Jessica Ennis may be unrealistic for some of us but starting a new sport or getting more active certainly is not. Unfortunately many people make the mistake of throwing themselves in too deeply and this has the opposite effect of de-motivating us with our goals when we can't achieve or maintain them.
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"The important thing to remember is that it must work for you and the SMART objectives tool allows you to really focus on what you want to achieve in a realistic way."
If you're thinking about taking up a new sport or increasing your activity, try to set your goals in the following way.
Specific: What, when, where and how often do want to do the activity? Being specific can help to keep you focused.
Measurable: How will you know you have achieved your goal? For example, use a pedometer to track your steps and progress?
Achievable: Is it realistic? Will it fit in around your life? Be honest with yourself.
Relevant: Is this something you really want to do? Is it important to you? Will it help you achieve your goal?
Time bound: Set a date to start your new activity? It can be easy to put things off.
The Healthy Lifestyles team can offer one-to-one support and advice on healthy eating, getting active or stopping smoking.
You can contact the team on 01803 208840 or visit www.tsdhc.nhs.uk to find out more about the services available.