27 June 2014

One of the first things to do after making the decision to lose weight is to set your goal. In order that we know what we’re going to have to do, it helps to know what it is we’re trying to achieve! Goal setting is really important. By deciding how much weight you want to lose, and how fit you are going to become you can begin to plan your daily routine, to change your lifestyle to become more active and control your dietary intake. Your goal is a very personal decision. It’s about what you want to achieve. What’s also important is that it’s realistic, and sustainable. Your goal might be a certain amount of weight loss, or a reduced waist line. Maybe it’s a level of fitness that allows you to play football with the kids. Maybe it’s fitting into your wedding dress next year, or being told by your doctor that your blood pressure tablets can be reduced. Whatever it is, it has to be your goal. Losing weight has many fantastic benefits, and will please those closest to you, but above all you have to do it for yourself.

When Amy Williams took her last look down the bob-skeleton course at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver in February, just before she threw herself down the course at 90 mph and into first place, I’m sure she knew what her goal was: to win the gold medal. She would have pictured herself winning many times. But as she waited for the clock to start she would also have been rehearsing her run over and over in her head, countless times, through every turn and curve in minute detail. Similarly, when David Beckham lines up to take a penalty he knows what his goal is, but, in his head he will also be rehearsing every detail of his run up, his kick, and even visualising the ball flying into a precise area of the net. Visualisation. The habit, the discipline, of picturing what you are about to do in such detail, over and over again, that your body, and mind, know exactly what they have to do. And this technique is not just for sportsmen and women. It’s also for you and me.

Once you have set your own personal goal, visualise it. Make it a priority every day to take time to think about how you will feel when you reach your goal. Find somewhere quiet, close your eyes and visualise how you will look, how you will feel, the reaction of your family and friends, the kind words they will say to you, the new clothes you will wear, and the new activities you will do. Visualise it. Feel it. Make it happen.