You have to crawl before you walk and walk before you run–this is both literally and figuratively speaking as it pertains to your life and fitness goals. As I sit nursing a knee injury, I had to find this out the hard way.

My Story

I grew up as an athlete. My mom says that she kept me involved in sports to keep me out of trouble. Well, that didn’t exactly work but it did teach me a lot of lessons that I still fall back on to this day. I was a swimmer, tennis player, cheerleader and more. But the one thing I NEVER was, a runner. Cut to adulthood. After I had mini, I was determined to handle my depression with my situation in a healthy way. I was nursing her so I couldn’t comfortably drink my problems away (I kid but I’m also totally serious). So I picked up running. I wanted to do something that I had never been able to do so that I could feel better. And I did. I ran numerous 5K’s, 10k’s, half marathon and even a triathlon. I was doing pole fitness and in my head, I was an overall bad ass!

Then my husband made me the happiest woman in the world. The combination of he and mini in my life gave me even more to be happy about and re-taught me about joy. Instead of crying through sweat, I snuggled with the man of my dreams. Running at 5am no longer seemed appetizing and then I got pregnant with abc. My body did NOT agree with working out while pregnant. I seriously felt like I’d broken something “down there” when I was working out. So I stopped. Then I had her and I started back up determined not to have baby weight. And it worked–till I went back to work and got stressed and fluffy.

{Not} Returning To Beast Mode

When I was working out consistently, I was a beast. Seriously. I had a good balance of both cardio and strength training. I was confident in what I was doing. I’d been trained for years so I definitely didn’t need a trainer or any additional wisdom in my workouts. Wrong. Again, you need to crawl before you walk. After going to the gym for 6 months consistently and not losing any weight, I finally asked for help. I go to Lifetime Fitness–quite literally the best gym in the world–and they conducted some assessments and told me where my issue was. I wasn’t in my fat burning zones. And my V02 levels were pretty low. So I had work to do–but the work was in the crawling phase of working out.

Setting and achieving fitness goals are two different ballgames. Check out how you achieve your fitness goals at

Setting Achievable Fitness Goals

I took the long route to get here but I wanted you to know that I understand the frustration but I’ve also seen the light. No matter what your goals are for fitness (becoming stronger, faster, more fit, skinny, etc) these tips are for you:

1. Complete a baseline assessment

When we start working out, especially if we were once really active, we tend to depend on muscle memory immediately and just jump back into it. Don’t. You can set yourself up for failure doing this and you can get hurt. See what your abilities are and then build upon that. Don’t know where to start? Here’s one that I’ve created for my accountability group.

2. Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals for your fitness journey

Earlier this week I talked about S.M.A.R.T. goals in your relationships will this goes true for your fitness journey too. Be very specific about the goals that you want THIS year/quarter/month/week so when you get tired, fed up, discouraged, you can fall back on these.

3. Create a fitness vision board

Make sure that it includes your S.M.A.R.T. goals on there. People are visual creatures. Seeing is believing for us. Put together a board that maps out what you want your fitness journey to be. This way, you have your plan and you see it daily.

4. Get an accountability partner(s)

Studies show that when people do things in groups or are held accountable, they’re more likely to achieve their goals. Don’t have a group? Feel free to join my private FB group or another awesome group I’m apart of.

5. Start small and work your way up 10% at a time

I want to run. But my body is not there yet. I’d like to left a million trillion pounds {jk} but again, my body isn’t there yet. The rule of thumb is to increase 10% weekly or as you get more comfortable. So right now I’m having to rebuild my foundation based upon my V02 levels and I’m having to start walking at 3.3 mph with an incline between 3-5%. I hate this. I do. But once my body is comfortable with this, I will increase it. If I choose to do something different, I risk hurting myself.

6. Show up

This seems obvious but showing up is half the battle. You’ve got to show up even when you don’t feel like it. Get to the gym. Talk to your accountability partner. Be honest about where you are emotionally or mentally but physically, be there.

7. Don’t be discouraged when results aren’t immediate

I’ve had workouts where I’ve been like “I know I’ve HAD to lose 10lbs (exaggerating) from this workout!!!” I step on the scale and I’ve gained weight and then I’m incredibly discouraged. Stay off the scale for awhile. Focus on the process–not the end goal. Enjoy the journey.

Setting and achieving fitness goals are two different ballgames. Check out how you achieve your fitness goals at

This journey of health and fitness is a long and tough one. We see these before and after pictures and think that their transformation was an easy one. Trust that they struggled too. Stay focused on your journey and don’t be discouraged.

What health goals do you have this year? How do you plan on achieving them?