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  • Writer's pictureMarcus Kowal

Long Term Goals vs Short Term Goals

As we discussed in the article S.M.A.R.T. Goals (if you missed it, click here), having time specific goals is key. That way, when you reach the hour/day/date you can evaluate yourself in an honest and objective way.

Did you reach the goals set forth? Either you did, or you did not. That’s why having numbers attached to your goals is so important. Numbers will always tell you the truth. “Numbers” can be set in many different ways. For example, X amount of pounds lost, X amount of Push-ups, X amount of minutes walked, or miles ran. It doesn’t matter what it is, what’s important is that there’s some form of measuring stick attached to your goal.

But, how do you set realistic, time-specific goals? If it’s a goal that is going to take you a year to complete, then the goal is too far away and it can be very difficult to stay motivated, because the goal is too far on the horizon and it can be difficult to feel a connection to it.

At the same time, if a goal is too short, say a week, it won’t be long enough to see real results.

You need both.

You need Short Term Goals (STG) that lead to long term results, i.e. Long Term Goals (LTG). Or vice versa, if you have an LTG, you need to break it up into several STGs. That way, you are constantly working towards your LTGs but still hitting milestones, which are small wins on the way towards the big win. And the little wins are so, so important - we will be talking about that in the next article.

So if you are going to lose sixty pounds in a year for example, that would be your LTG. Losing 60 pounds is too far away and not “tangible” enough. Therefore you would have to break this goal down into your STGs. Logically, you could break it down into five pounds per month.

If you want to make it even smaller, you can break it down into weekly goals of 1.25 pounds a week, or 0.18 pounds a day and all of a sudden, the lofty goal of sixty pounds is very attainable!

Whatever your goals are, sit down and write them out. This can be done by yourself, with a partner or a personal trainer.

Now don’t wait but take action!

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