Exercise Goals… hmm, what should they be?

So I’ve met my first goal of not dying young–I’m 36.  The next goal is shorter: not dying.

Goals work better if you go at them while staying true to who you are.  So a couch potato should be able to become one of those people that watch TV on a treadmill.  

So how can I get some technology into my exercise goals?

- Heart rate monitors.  Heart beats are easy to count.

- Pedometers. Steps are easy to count.

- Cybex weight machines are awesome and count repetitions, but only if you gym has that equipment

- GPS can measure how far you went.

And this feeds into that goals are supposed  to be measurable.

Well, enough blogging, time to go to the gym.  45 minutes seems like a good goal.

One thought on “Exercise Goals… hmm, what should they be?

  1. Hi, Matt. I found your site looking for Na’vi stuff (cool movie, huh?). I found this post while trolling your archives; I know it’s old, but I thought you might appreciate my two cents.

    First off, congratulations on becoming old! Second, congrats on considering becoming physically active. I’ve done both recently myself. I’ve also read a ton of stuff trying desperately to figure out what I really should be doing wrt exercise – probably a lot of the stuff you’ve been reading too. I ended up tossing out almost everything I’d read. Maybe I can save you some time.

    My advice: do something every day, make it short, and make it intense. Forget long workouts – short and intense is better. Forget metrics and recordkeeping – simpler is better. Forget goals – the only goal you need is to make physical activity a daily habit, one that you’ll adopt and keep for the rest of your life (which will hopefully be forever, right?). Once you’ve adopted that habit, you will eventually become as fit as it is possible for you to become… and isn’t that really the only goal you care about?

    Here’s what I do currently. Every other day, I do calisthenics: pull-ups, sit-ups, push-ups, and squats. For each exercise I do as many as I can in one minute, and I rest for thirty seconds between exercises. I also do one minute each of handstands, arch holds, and hollow body holds, again with thirty seconds of rest between exercises.

    On the other every other day, I run and walk in intervals. One minute of running, thirty seconds of walking, repeated eight times.

    As a warm-up, I gently flex (not stretch!) all the major joints; that takes about three or four minutes. The workout (whether calisthenics or running) takes twelve minutes. Afterwards, I cool down by gently stretching the major muscles, another three or four minutes. All told, I’m done in twenty minutes a day, start to finish, every day.

    When I started out I was miserable at every exercise and at running. But it only took twenty minutes, and only eight of those were hard work, so I actually had enough motivation to do a workout every day. And over time I got better. A lot better, a lot faster than I would have thought possible. And I felt great doing it.

    The key points are: short, intense, daily, forever.

    Maybe something like that would work for you, too.