‘M’ is for Motivation, among other things

Revised February cardio goals

I am having a really tough time staying on track this month. I think I may have set my goals just a little too lofty as far as cardio was concerned. I don’t want to make excuses, but without a normal schedule it is UBER difficult to plan in some exercise time. I’ll be honest, I haven’t been able to maintain a true 5 day-a-week cardio exercise routine. This week was especially hard as I had one day where I left my parent’s house at 7:30 a.m. and didn’t return home to my own house until 10:30 p.m. that night! I know, you might think I could have squeezed in some exercise in the morning if I was really dedicated, but not so. I had to do extensive hair and make-up for my modeling gig that day. (Yes, a PLUS size modeling gig!) Not being a morning person in the first place, nor one to ever ‘do’ my hair, it gets complicated. Then there was the sinus infection…sigh.

So what am I going to do about it? Well, sitting here listing the reasons I can’t do something is not going to help me at all. Nor will it help you! As my husband so often likes to say, “don’t focus on the problem, focus on the solution”. He is right, he’s right, I know he’s right. My biggest issue with all this is how it affects my self-esteem and drive when I don’t reach my goals. Looks like it is time to do a little edit on my goals.

At a conference in Florida I was able to hear a man named Raymond Aaron speak. He believes that you can live and thrive by doing what you love if you are smart about it. One of the techniques he uses is called ‘MTO goal setting’. For you Ontarians, no, he isn’t talking about the Ministry of Transport for Ontario. M refers to minimum (see, ‘M’ ISN’T just for motivation!), T is for target and O is for outrageous.

I propose altering my February Cardio goals to this:

M (minimum) – I will do 30 minutes of cardio at LEAST 3 times a week for the month of February, 2012.

T (target) – I will do 30 minutes of cardio at LEAST 5 times a week for the month of February, 2012.

O (outrageous) – I will do 30 minutes of cardio at LEAST 6 times a week for the month of February, 2012.

By using this technique, you can set different levels for the same goal. I know that I can do my cardio 3 times a week because normally I have been achieving a four cardio week. My target still remains the same, because that is what I am actually shooting for. But if I don’t quite achieve it, I’ve still maintained my minimum goal for the week. When I first started doing goal setting it seemed a bit like a cop out. But as long you don’t make your minimum goal something ridiculously low, like “I’ll drive by the gym and think about working out.” then it can be a great motivational tool. Even if you don’t achieve your target goal, that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate the fact that you ALMOST did! I’ve been so down at the fact that one week I only made it to four cardio events during the week that I forget that I MADE IT TO FOUR CARDIO EVENTS THAT WEEK!!!! Considering in January and before it was an average of zero for a long time, that’s frickin’ sweet!

You can totally apply this to almost every aspect of your life and goal setting. Try it for a month and see how it goes. Just remember to do the following:

1. Put your original goal as your target goal.

2. Make sure your minimum is something you can definitely attain, but not too low that it will seem insignificant.

3. Put your outrageous goal as something lofty but achievable. If you achieve it, you’ll feel fantastic!

4. Put deadlines on your goals. If that means you have to do it every week, or every month, that’s fine.

5. Post up your goals so that you can review them. Then when you achieve them, even if it’s the Minimum goal, you can give yourself a pat on the back. Or do a little victory dance, if no one is looking.

Try this goal setting method on for size and let me know how it goes! If you want to read more of Raymond Aaron’s techniques or download a free digital copy of his book, “Double your income doing what you love” visit the official Raymond Aaron website.

Do you think this looks like a good method for goal setting? Why or why not? What has worked for you in the past?


About msjenniferwalker

I'm a Jenn of all trades, as long as they are creative and fulfilling. I'm an actress, writer, photographer and all around social person. I love to learn, travel, meet new people and have new experiences.

Posted on February 17, 2012, in Experiences, Information, Inspiration and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Hey thanks for linking me over here! Glad to know there’s someone out there who is working on their goals 🙂

  2. Good call on altering your goals, hon. It’s really disheartening when you can’t reach your goals because you set them too high (it’s like a double-whammy). Keep in mind that you are making huge strides! And that perhaps planning to ease into things might work well. In health psych we often suggest planning to gradually increase activity level -so your goals from week to week would change. I.e., go to gym 1 time in first week, 2 times second week, etc. Also, they suggest that specific goals help (i.e., what qualifies as cardio?) and – exactly as you’ve done here, setting minimums, but giving yourself credit for what you do accomplish, regardless of whether it achieves your target or not. 🙂

  3. Thanks for linking to the Daily PlanIt. I like the idea of having different levels to a goal.

  4. I love MTO!

    Sounds like your husband & mine have talked – we try to go by the rule that you can complain two times, because everyone needs to vent, but by the third time, you’ve got to either have a solution or stop whining. 🙂

  5. Hi Jennifer, I love this post. Its inspired me to write another (similar) post. I’ll credit you of course!

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