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chodan9
01-30-2012, 12:48 PM
I see a lot of folks who post that they want to lose ABC pounds in XYZ time frame.
Like 100 pounds by the end of the year or 30 pounds by spring swim suit season.
Or also there are a plethora of transformation contests available for people to do, even one of the most popular ones P90X is limited to 3 months.

In my opinion setting arbitrary time lines for your fitness goals is a mixed thing? sure it my provide you the motivation to hit your short time goals, but I have seen this many times also it also provides many people an end date for effort.
they see it as the time where they no longer have to hit the gym or eat right. While there are a few who may will continue on but for the most part those folks don't even make to their short term goal.

On the other side of things I have seen more experienced members here will do a transformation contest and will be successful because its just another part of their long term goals.

the point of this is, setting goals is fine and setting time tables can be OK also. But try not to make an arbitrary time table become an arbitrary quit date for your fitness goals.

thoughts?

induced_drag
01-30-2012, 01:04 PM
Biggest problem that I see, is people setting unrealistic goals.

I think having goals is a VERY important part of training. Without them we are lost. Putting a time frame on the goal often determines part of the strategy you go about in trying to hit that goal. With that said....it is very important that we maintain the ability to adjust those timetables if we need to. Often, you really do not know exactly how your body will respond to a caloric shift...etc. I find this most true when it comes to gaining lean mass rather losing. One can never really predict lean mass gains and timeframes.... and even if you track, these change as we go on in our training.

Just my thoughts....but for me, timetables have never been a end goal...but rather a benchmark, so I cant relate to the finish line effect. I hope.....really hope that every time I think I see it, I have the will to define a new goal and therefore the "race" is never ending.

Minotaur
01-30-2012, 01:08 PM
the point of this is, setting goals is fine and setting time tables can be OK also. But try not to make an arbitrary time table become an arbitrary quit date for your fitness goals.

thoughts?

Qft. Arbitrariness or goals set too high will doom a person to failure.

I know I have 35 lbs to lose, and by common wisdom, losing 1.5 lbs/week will get me there around the 2nd week of June. Can I get to a 33" waist losing those 35 lbs in the same time frame? I don't see why not. Will I also put an inch on my biceps by then? Uh no, that's unrealistic. I'll set my next goal for whatever I want to achieve, be it maintenance or adding some more muscle, after the first goal is met.

chodan9
01-30-2012, 01:15 PM
but for me, timetables have never been a end goal...but rather a benchmark,

I think that is a healthier approach both mentally and physically.

chodan9
01-30-2012, 01:18 PM
that's a good point mino
lots of conflicting goals out there. Fueled a lot by misleading advertising.
Most ads will lead you believe you can get substantially bigger and leaner at the same time, not only that but doing it in 12 weeks.
Those of us who have been doing this for more than a year or 2 know better than this.

ljimd
01-30-2012, 01:19 PM
I think bbers and PLers set goals all the time. Especially if you are a competitor. Competition is healthy whether it's formal or not. Realism is important sure, but if you set your goals too low - then that's probably where you will end up.

-=FLEX=-
01-30-2012, 01:23 PM
I think setting realistic goals is necessary to keep one focused an honest. Too many newbs have no clue the time it takes to build a decent physique, but for those of us that have been doing this for most of our lives it's not too hard.

Better than not settign any timeline at all, IMHO, even if not realistic.

How many people have we seen flounder with with zero results?

Case and point: VERY overwieght dude at my gym that I've seen since I joined. I assume his goal is to lose weight not just because he is fat but because he's there every day and doesn't lift; he just does the spin classes.

Yet in a yer I have not seen ANY change in his physique.

So maybe if he set a goal to lose 75lbs in 60 days that wouldn't be realistic, but it looks like he didn't set any goal because he's not getting any better...

I've set some goals; many I met and soem I didn't. But as soon as I achieve them I set new goals, and if I fail to meet them I re-adjust, I don't just quit.

chodan9
01-30-2012, 02:27 PM
So maybe if he set a goal to lose 75lbs in 60 days that wouldn't be realistic, but it looks like he didn't set any goal because he's not getting any better...

good point
I do see some guys who train consistently but ignore nutrition or train without purpose. Those guys could use a boost in motivation that a short term goal could provide

rangerNY
01-30-2012, 02:44 PM
Excellent thread. In December I felt like I needed a little kick. Things had gotten a bit stale and I could see myself getting a bit too soft around the middle again. I stumbled onto Kris Gethin's 12-week transformation program on here (bodybuilding.com/gethintrainer). Sure, it got me fired up and re-motivated to go to another level, but 2 weeks in I started modifying the program because I don't feel the need to set a goal of "ripped in 12 weeks". That just doesn't fit for me right now. The program is serving a valuable purpose insofar as its giving me a new outlook on training and intensity, so I'm happy with that. It also serves to give me a general guide in terms of the road I want to be traveling down at the end of the 12 weeks, but I'm not looking for specific losses or gains nailed to a specific date on the calendar.

I'd rather look at it as 12 weeks to transform my training methods. At the end of that period, I should be in better condition and looking better than I was when I started, and better prepared to continue to journey. Not sure if that makes sense. I'm rambling now. LOL

ironwill2008
01-30-2012, 04:11 PM
I think everyone needs a plan that includes some long-term as well as short-term goals. As has already been mentioned, that's a relatively easy thing for an experienced trainee to do, but a really difficult thing for a noob to do. Most have been mislead so far off-course by the lay media that their expectations are skewed far away from what's realistic.

My best advice to those folks is to ask in this forum what might be possible for them.

bmccurdy
01-30-2012, 05:01 PM
2 weeks in I started modifying the program because I don't feel the need to set a goal of "ripped in 12 weeks". That just doesn't fit for me right now.

I think this is an important concept most beginners often don't think about. Plans are not written in stone, it should serve as a good solid base but you should feel free to modify it to better meet your goals and the equipment available to you.

You do need some type of goal, without it you have no idea where you are headed.

chodan9
01-30-2012, 05:46 PM
I think this is an important concept most beginners often don't think about. Plans are not written in stone, it should serve as a good solid base but you should feel free to modify it to better meet your goals and the equipment available to you.

You do need some type of goal, without it you have no idea where you are headed.

I think experienced lifters can get by with modding a program much easier than a new trainee, I still cringe at some of the preconceived notions I brought into the gym with me, if I had attempted to modify a plan it would have gone very badly. Even at that it would have been better than the plan I had LOL, which was no real plan

Frnkd
01-30-2012, 07:28 PM
This is an excellent thread, it started me thinking about my situation and goals in general. This is my second time around to seriously get into physical shape. The

I decided to make a "goal" to loose the weight back to where I wanted it to be, 150# in my case(almost there at this writing) and really start working out to build my body to its potential....I did join bb.com a year prior, actually forgot I did, but at this time became active by taking advantage of all that it had.

In the 5 months that I started making this determination, goal as you will, I have, IMO, transformed my body to one that I have never seen before. My diet, knowledge about nutrition, and exercise and I believe key components of bb has been expanded emmensly.

What was it that I have learned though, as this thread have made me reflect upon, is that the second time around or this second chance will not be like the first. In that I was going to learn more about the total picture of physical fitness and body building in terms of diet, nutrition, exercise, and realistic expectations.

One, my goal was not just to loose weight but to learn how to loose and maintain through a life changing diet, that I can maintain and understand the nuiansance that makes a good diet. Good nutrietion doesnt mean bland tasteless, unenjoyable food.

Two: I began to learn about exerciseing that my past trainer actually probably taught me but it just blew past me as I had no bb goal, just a lose weight goal. Got some apps for my iPhone including the BB.com app, to track my progress and view how certain exercises were done.

and finally: As I made a goal for BB and all that was incorporated to make the goal successful I made an effort to learn. I read articles on BB.com, read threads and posts, watched Youtube vids, asked through pm or posted questions that came up.....in other words take it upon myself to gain the knowledge to reach those goals that I made. Chat with people who motivate and inspired me.

By all means I have not yet accomplished my ultimate goal: Kick my genetics into gear (my younger brother has shown me that there I have the genetics, he was a he-man with big chest, arms etc, now unfortunately big but not muscle big IYKWIM, lol). Also to be able to wear a t-shrt two sizes small so my muscles are ripping through it rather than a fat bulging belly! lol

Having an exercise and a workout plan was key, along with the tools of knowledge to accomplish each step along the way. One thing I admire though is the expertise of the members. Yeah maybe they may come across as "he-man, grunting, gruff, yeah-what-you-wantish" but hey my attitude is I want to learn how these guys got to where they are. No guts no glory!

Sorry so long, but I really saw this as an opportunity for me to share with noobies and people who also is on their second chance.

Setting a timetable, yeah its good, but without all the knoweldge and motivation that is needed to accomplish it, its not going to happen.....do it right the first time.

kcmoto
01-30-2012, 07:39 PM
I see a lot of folks who post that they want to lose ABC pounds in XYZ time frame.
Like 100 pounds by the end of the year or 30 pounds by spring swim suite season.
Or also there are a plethora of transformation contests available for people to do, even one of the most popular ones P90X is limited to 3 months.

In my opinion setting arbitrary time lines for your fitness goals is a mixed thing? sure it my provide you the motivation to hit your short time goals, but I have seen this many times also it also provides many people an end date for effort.
they see it as the time where they no longer have to hit the gym or eat right. While there are a few who may will continue on but for the most part those folks don't even make to there short term goal.

On the other side of things I have seen more experienced members here will do a transformation contest and will be successful because its just another part of their long term goals.

the point of this is, setting goals is fine and setting time tables can be OK also. But try not to make an arbitrary time table become an arbitrary quit date for your fitness goals.

thoughts?

My thoughts are if you are fitness oriented then it is a lifelong process!! I have seen it and experienced reaching a certain goal and then once that has been achieved it all goes to pot!!! You go back to where you were before or not focused and lose what you have gained. You must not relent and keep all things in your fitness goals current and never expire. Keep on and stay vigilant!

IronCharles
01-30-2012, 10:08 PM
Without a clearly defined goal, energy is being wasted, and not being focused on the task at hand. Ask every non-muscular person you see in the gym today what their fitness goal is. I guarantee you, the vast majority will say, "To get in shape", "To be healthy", or "To be strong." Now, ask them, "At what point will you be able to say, 'I've reached my goal'". They will look at you and say, "I dunno, lol!" Now, approach every muscular, ripped person and ask them the same question. You'll get answers like, "I'm shooting to squat 4 plates", "I've got a show coming up in September and I've got to bring up my legs", or "I'm going to have 20" biceps by the end of the year."


It's not a coincidence that successful bodybuilders have clear-cut goals. Without them, a person has no real motivation or outline to accomplish a certain task. It's like the difference between walking out your front door thinking, "I'm going to walk to the store and get some bread", and walking out your front door, closing your eyes, and walking until you run into something.

Frnkd
01-31-2012, 12:20 AM
Without a clearly defined goal, energy is being wasted, and not being focused on the task at hand. Ask every non-muscular person you see in the gym today what their fitness goal is. I guarantee you, the vast majority will say, "To get in shape", "To be healthy", or "To be strong." Now, ask them, "At what point will you be able to say, 'I've reached my goal'". They will look at you and say, "I dunno, lol!" Now, approach every muscular, ripped person and ask them the same question. You'll get answers like, "I'm shooting to squat 4 plates", "I've got a show coming up in September and I've got to bring up my legs", or "I'm going to have 20" biceps by the end of the year."


It's not a coincidence that successful bodybuilders have clear-cut goals. Without them, a person has no real motivation or outline to accomplish a certain task. It's like the difference between walking out your front door thinking, "I'm going to walk to the store and get some bread", and walking out your front door, closing your eyes, and walking until you run into something.

You know, you're absolutely right!....I was one of those people! Lol

SlothBane
01-31-2012, 02:42 AM
Good thread. I think goals are a good thing and so are timetables. The problem lies when the goals and timetables become the focus. For some, this could lead to defeat. For others, it could be a great personal victory. Win or lose, there is always a lesson. Often the journey ends here; but for a few, the goals and timetables only serve to fuel their passion. I think these are the lucky people. Their success ultimately leads to the motivation of others.

Personally I don't have a well thought out goal /timeline for now, but I do have a plan. Hopefully, long term progression will be my friend for many years to come.

chodan9
01-31-2012, 03:10 AM
Without a clearly defined goal, energy is being wasted, and not being focused on the task at hand. Ask every non-muscular person you see in the gym today what their fitness goal is. I guarantee you, the vast majority will say, "To get in shape", "To be healthy", or "To be strong." Now, ask them, "At what point will you be able to say, 'I've reached my goal'". They will look at you and say, "I dunno, lol!" Now, approach every muscular, ripped person and ask them the same question. You'll get answers like, "I'm shooting to squat 4 plates", "I've got a show coming up in September and I've got to bring up my legs", or "I'm going to have 20" biceps by the end of the year."
.
yep
that is one point I was trying to make with of the 12 week transformation, a "transformation" is not so much a clearly defined goal as it is a concept of self improvement. you may want a transformation bet we each need to decide what that means to us before we can work toward it.

IronCharles
01-31-2012, 07:02 PM
yep
that is one point I was trying to make with of the 12 week transformation, a "transformation" is not so much a clearly defined goal as it is a concept of self improvement. you may want a transformation bet we each need to decide what that means to us before we can work toward it.But the good thing about a time limit is, it forces you to focus to get as much done as possible in the allotted time. It may be an artificially contrived urgency, but your body will respond to it, regardless. The MuscleTech contest they had here at the start of 2009 is what got me back into lifting after taking a couple decades off. I may not have stuck with it without the pressure of a time limit, and the promise of a potential reward. But once I saw what I was able to accomplish in those 12 weeks, I was hooked.



In a nutshell: Sometime the end does justify the means.

rand18m
02-01-2012, 06:53 AM
I think setting realistic goals is necessary to keep one focused an honest. Too many newbs have no clue the time it takes to build a decent physique, but for those of us that have been doing this for most of our lives it's not too hard.

Better than not settign any timeline at all, IMHO, even if not realistic.

How many people have we seen flounder with with zero results?

[b]Case and point: VERY overwieght dude at my gym that I've seen since I joined. I assume his goal is to lose weight not just because he is fat but because he's there every day and doesn't lift; he just does the spin classes.

Yet in a yer I have not seen ANY change in his physique.

So maybe if he set a goal to lose 75lbs in 60 days that wouldn't be realistic, but it looks like he didn't set any goal because he's not getting any better...[b]

I've set some goals; many I met and soem I didn't. But as soon as I achieve them I set new goals, and if I fail to meet them I re-adjust, I don't just quit.

Be careful with this, don't assume he's there to lose weight or change his body comp at all. He may just be there to be fit. Clinically the data is heavily suggesting it's better to be fit than fat. What that means is, outcomes are better to be fit no matter your weight. Overweight people that are fit do better than thin that are sedentary. More and more the recommendations to overweight and or obese are to get fit first. I have seen men who are quite large who can ride like hell for an hour in that damn spin/rpm class etc. They could care less our concerns over our weight and general look.

Op great topic, I do believe you are discussing this primarily from the angle of what many beginners do? Unrealistic or arbitrary goals can be a hindrance, that is where they need someone who is experienced guiding them along, either a friend or a good personal trainer who understands their goals and how to get them there. A mentor if you will!

chodan9
02-01-2012, 07:30 AM
The MuscleTech contest they had here at the start of 2009 is what got me back into lifting after taking a couple decades off. I may not have stuck with it without the pressure of a time limit, and the promise of a potential reward. But once I saw what I was able to accomplish in those 12 weeks, I was hooked.

that's true for you

but you are a one of a kind beast LOL, most folks cant even make it to the end of the contest.
What is it old superman says? "99 percent of people fail in their fitness goals in their first year" I would guess most of them are out in the first month

Marius_Ursus
02-01-2012, 07:55 AM
I read an article years ago by Bill Phillips where he wrote about the importance of goal management from a project management standpoint. You know how you have a goal in a project that might go something like, "Release the new xBox version on November 18th 2014"? But you can't stop there. You have to break that down into big chunks, then into smaller chunks.

1) Requirements gathering: January 2012
- Marketing responsibilities (To be completed by Feb 20, 2012)
- Customer relations responsibilities (To be completed March 3, 2012)
2) Development: Code Complete April 14, 2013
- Feasibility
- Design
- Code Phase 1
- Code Phase 2
- Code Phase 3
3) Quality: Test complete by Feb 1, 2014
- QA phase 1
- etc.

It's the same way with hitting physical goals. When you have the big goal and break it down into smaller pieces, you can see better where the impossibilities of losing 50 pounds in month lies. You can guess that maybe it's a bit lofty to bring your squat from 175 to 300 in two weeks.

Singe03
02-01-2012, 09:23 AM
Without a clearly defined goal, energy is being wasted, and not being focused on the task at hand. Ask every non-muscular person you see in the gym today what their fitness goal is. I guarantee you, the vast majority will say, "To get in shape", "To be healthy", or "To be strong." Now, ask them, "At what point will you be able to say, 'I've reached my goal'". They will look at you and say, "I dunno, lol!" Now, approach every muscular, ripped person and ask them the same question. You'll get answers like, "I'm shooting to squat 4 plates", "I've got a show coming up in September and I've got to bring up my legs", or "I'm going to have 20" biceps by the end of the year."

You are of course absolutely correct, however someone has to know where they are to understand where they want to go, I don't think the average person in the gym can look at pictures like some of you guys and understand what it takes to get there. I know I didn't.

When I started I was around 192 (at 5'8) and thought "I'm getting a little pudgy but I'm carrying a good bit of muscle, I'm pretty strong, it wont take much to get me in to shape." I set a goal to lose 15lbs because "that should get me pretty lean and muscular". I had no freaking clue where I was, I wasn't being consciously unrealistic, just ignorant because I had little experience and knowledge to go on. Fifteen pounds "to a six pack" became 35lbs to a very blurry four pack and the iron taught me that I'm nowhere close to pretty strong.

Anyway, I don't blame folks for not having a real solid goal in mind, they don't know how to set one and may not want to. A good number are just there because they want to drop a pants size or because their doctor told them to workout. Most of their goals and motivation are different from mine, mine are different from some of yours.

When you add in the amount of BS out there by everyone from supplement advertisers selling their magic pills to trainers selling their magic core workouts, it is really hard for a newbie to even start finding out where to look for the real clues. Personally, I'm stubborn and have a decently tuned BS detector which is a lucky combination when one starts looking in to fitness. The amount of information is overwhelming and mostly wrong or at least unnecessary and the whole mess is very difficult to pick through until you have some background knowledge of what works and what doesn't. I found this forum and what a lot of you guys were saying didn't fit with all the advertisements and magazine workouts, but it made sense so I listened and finally started getting results.

Only in the last few months have I known enough to set a real goal and have a plan to attain it. As I type this, it is 5x250 on squats (past parallel or better) to get to 1.5x my body weight. My starting strength spreadsheet says that is 12 workouts away (4 weeks from today) if I can make it without resetting.

billb7581
02-01-2012, 10:17 AM
Trying to keep my goals realistic, but still challenging. I think that is the key.


Short term my goal is to get my reps each week (this week 11, next week 12 then up the weights 10% and drop back to 8).

Medium term I would like to cut into this spare tire some and have bigger chest shoulders and arms by summer to offset my spare tire some and look "decent" at 255 or so. Struggling to think of an example, maybe George Foreman when he was older.

Long term I would like to get into the strongman scene, but I would have to run my cycle 30 more weeks just to bench my body weight for reps, assuming I never stall which may or not be a valid assumption, so I have a long way to go before being strong for my size.

Long story short, I'm just going to keep on pressing with the All Pro workout and see where it takes me.

Marius_Ursus
02-01-2012, 11:04 AM
Trying to keep my goals realistic, but still challenging. I think that is the key.


Short term my goal is to get my reps each week (this week 11, next week 12 then up the weights 10% and drop back to 8).

Medium term I would like to cut into this spare tire some and have bigger chest shoulders and arms by summer to offset my spare tire some and look "decent" at 255 or so. Struggling to think of an example, maybe George Foreman when he was older.

Long term I would like to get into the strongman scene, but I would have to run my cycle 30 more weeks just to bench my body weight for reps, assuming I never stall which may or not be a valid assumption, so I have a long way to go before being strong for my size.

Long story short, I'm just going to keep on pressing with the All Pro workout and see where it takes me.

RE: Strongman Competitions, a very wise coach once told me, "Bull****. First competitions are for experience. Don't worry about where you'll place. Just get out there and compete."

Now, he was talking to me about powerlifting, but the idea still applies.

billb7581
02-01-2012, 11:15 AM
But if you cant even do 1 rep of 225 how are you supposed to bench that big log thing? LOL.

MadJasper
02-01-2012, 12:05 PM
Just my thoughts....but for me, timetables have never been a end goal...but rather a benchmark

^^^This

And my timetables are not arbitrary. I usually put a fair amount of research in determining what can physically and mentally be accomplished and look at my past performance. Only then will I set a goal and timetable... that admittedly pushes the limits of what I think is possible. But I'm a very competitive person and needs to have difficult goals to reach.

My most recent goal of 225lb and 15% or less BF by January 1, 2014 is ambitious for anyone, especially someone my age. But I know that it's possible based on what I've done, what I've read and what I know about myself. And when you break it down to smaller objectives or benchmarks, it's only 4.375lbs every three months. That looks far less daunting.

billb7581
02-02-2012, 06:41 AM
RE: Strongman Competitions, a very wise coach once told me, "Bull****. First competitions are for experience. Don't worry about where you'll place. Just get out there and compete."

Now, he was talking to me about powerlifting, but the idea still applies.


Yea but what is the point if you cant even do any of the events... I would be like spongebob when he got the inflatable arms LOL.