By SARAH IDRISS, Staff WriterGoal Setter

Q: How can I effectively set a goal and stick to it?

What a great question! There are a few ways you can do so.

First, you should set something attainable. Losing two pounds in one week is
attainable but definitely NOT healthy, for example. Honestly, would not
even focus on losing weight. I would focus more on how you look. I, myself, weigh
more than most girls around me. However, muscle weighs more
than fat. For people just starting out, I would just set to lose roughly 15 pounds
in 4 months. That’s about a pound a week. It’s not too fast and it’s definitely
something attainable.

Next, I would try to focus more on making a lifestyle change rather than just
pursuing a diet. The word “diet” sounds terrifying, really. Instead, making small
changes to your diet and food choices are easy to do and will help in the long
run. For example, you could choose a side salad instead of French fries with your
dinner. You could also choose a small piece of chocolate instead of the whole bar;
just for the taste. Your taste buds register the first three bites of any food you eat
the strongest, so why waste your time eating the whole bowl of ice cream? A very
small scoop of ice cream eaten slowly goes a long way. You’ll satiate any cravings
while cutting some calorie intake.

Last, I would envision your goal. It’s been psychologically proven that when
people look at pictures of others that they wish to eventually look like that
they’ll train better and eventually get there. It also helps to look at inspiring
quotes. Personally, I try to look at motivational quotes the night before an early
morning gym session. Getting excited about exercising makes it easier to stick to
a regimen.

Overall, just keep pushing! A couple great quotes that I like to think of when I feel
like I can’t make it through:

“A year ago you’ll wish you started today.” – Karen Lamb

“Make It Count” – Nike