My fitness goals this year are primarily focused on doing my next Hyrox fitness
event in May. This ensures my aerobic fitness, strength and body weight are all in a great place. If that all goes well then perhaps I would do the Hyrox Pro event in November after that. Albeit, it is quite good to not have any immediate fitness challenges so I can be more balanced with training and health. Alongside this I would like to focus on developing my cooking skills, as I set in my 2023 goals
, and focusing on optimising the underlying behaviours behind my health.
This raises the question about what your fitness goals should be, this depends on where you are at currently vs what motivates you. For me the most important thing would be covering your basic fitness and health requirements of life. This is because it underpins how you feel every day, or how you will feel in years to come.
This could be defined by slightly different categories but the main ones would be that you can squat to the floor to pick up an object with a straight back, you can do a lunge without pain, can get up off the floor without using both hands and can jump pain free. Alongside this you would have you the aerobic fitness to do a short jog and be able to walk up a hill. Your fitness should also account for injuries so that you are not suffering regularly with pain nor are you likely to get injured if you do get moving. These aims are more than achievable for most and do not require any brutal exercise plans, you just need to be consistent over time with your strength and fitness work.
For health, much of the analysis used is more about probabilities and predicting what will happen in future over how you feel today, e.g. how much do you drink, do you smoke etc. The two basic data points that do underpin most long term health stats would be your weight, as presented in your BMI score and your aerobic fitness, measured in Vo2 max. You would want to get your BMI close ish to the normal range (at least below 30 – adapt the score if you have extra muscle or you are at the extremes in height) and VO2 at least be in ideal range (over 30-35 ish at least, but check tables
for age specific data).
These latter two traits require consistency over time to achieve. Each individual day or session are nothing that dramatic but the key is how do you put it together to be doing this longer term, e.g. eating less for 70 out of 90 days over a 3 month period, exercising twice a week for a year.
These are the only goals I would tell someone to try to achieve as it means you will optimise how you feel today as well as playing the percentages to longer term health and vitality.
Outside of these aims, all other goals are by choice and personal to you. If you want to run a marathon then go for it, if you are psyched to look good in a bikini then go all in. Whatever inspires you is great but you still need to account for the above standards.
It is pretty easy to focus on one goal and still account for the other’s needs. A 10 minute aerobic workout could be done once a week to get fitter. If you struggle on a movement then just a minute or two a day of a targeted stretch could greatly improve it over a month.
What Does This Mean For You?
As a trainer it frustrates me a lot that so few people are successful in their health & fitness efforts. The above elements will totally transform how you feel every day in life and they can be achieved without that much effort to be honest. What stops most people going after these sort of goals is a mental block, not a physical one. You are imagining what you need to do incorrectly, you believe you need to do what some fitness freak does, or that you have to remove all bad behaviours etc. Maybe you simply do not believe it is possible, this is the biggest and perhaps most common lie in most people’s heads. It could be that you do not know certain things or skills, that means you simply need to learn something new. Just like you did if you learnt to drive a car, to play a new board game or how you learnt to use the last new phone you bought.
This year offers an opportunity to transform things, you should aim to cover the basic life requirements of fitness and health. Your future self will thank you; your present self has what it takes already within you, albeit you may need some support to get pull it together to channel your abilities.
Photos – Some photos from previous year’s fitness goals; me training with my coach for a body building show, performing in Samba and last year before I did the Hyrox,