fitnessMy name is Joe Grady or “Coach Grady” for those of you who know me from camp. I am the strength and conditioning specialist for Koubek Camps and here to provide you with weekly tips and ideas for to you use as you are trying to become a better athlete, get in shape or just increase your overall health. Please remember that the subjects discussed in this blog are based on my opinions and what I have learned throughout my years as a fitness enthusiast and physical education teacher.  Always feel free to ask questions regardless of the subject and I will be happy to discuss your questions with you further.

Since this is the first blog I figured it would be appropriate to start with “GOALS.”  Whether it is in fitness or another area of your life, whenever you are trying to achieve something, it is important to have and set goals.  At first thought, setting goals sounds pretty black and white, right? You think, “what do I want to achieve?”  The answer to that question becomes your goal.  Well, yes and no.  In order to be successful in achieving your goals, you actually have to set two types of goals — long term and short term.

Let’s first look at long term goals. When setting a long term goal, you should use the thought process I just mentioned: what do I ultimately want to achieve? And the answer to that question will be your long term goal. The one problem people run into with long term goals is they tend to set them too high.  So make sure your long term goal is achievable and realistic. For example, let’s say you’ve set your long term goal and it is to work hard in the off season on your basketball game so you can start on the varsity team next year. This could be a realistic long term goal for many young athletes in high school.   But what steps do you take towards achieving that goal? You know that you plan to “work really hard,” but what does that entail? This is where short term goals come into play.  If you want to improve your game enough to be a starter next year on the varsity team, what do you have to do? An example of a short term goal could be as follows: I want to become stronger so I want to be able to do 50 pushups in a row in two months, and to achieve that I’m going to do as many push-ups as I can for three minutes every other day.

I like to use a flight of stairs as an analogy for long and short term goals. Your long term goal is at the top of the stairs while all of your short term goals are represented by each individual stair. Remember you’re making your goals reachable, but that doesn’t mean they should be easy. If you want to achieve your goals, you will have to work hard for each one of those steps you take towards the top.