fitness

24 Health & Fitness Goal Ideas To Inspire You This Year

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24 Health & Fitness Goal Ideas To Inspire You This Year
health and fitness goal ideas

The blank-slate start of a new year (or even a new month or week!) often brings with it a surge of inspiration to aim higher and move forward on your fitness journey with a new sense of motivation. But what is it you’re working towards? 

If you’re feeling ready to set yourself an exciting fitness goal but are stumped for ideas, you’ve come to the right place. After years of releasing a wide variety of programs for all fitness levels and training styles, sweating alongside amazing trainers and being blown away by the dedication of the most incredible global community of women, we’ve pulled together some go-to goals for every type of fitness journey.

Keep reading for some fresh inspo, whether you’re looking to make fitness a habit, improve your strength, challenge your cardio fitness, expand your skills, boost your workout recovery or nourish your body and mind.

One of our favourite ways to set and smash a goal is to join the six-week Sweat Challenge, with the next one kicking off on January 8, 2024! Have you signed up yet?

If you want to… Make fitness a habit

Work out 12 times a month

Aiming to work out three times a week is a common target, but we love this monthly goal for the extra flexibility it gives you. If you have a week where you complete four workouts, it’s not a big deal if another week you feel exhausted and only manage two. If you get to the end of the month and have easily smashed out more than 12, you know to set your target even higher for the next month!

Set a step goal for the month 

A step goal can be a target you aim to tick off every single day, or a number that you want to be your daily average by the time the month comes to an end. A daily achievement is motivating for some people, while the flexibility to move more on some days and less on others might be more your jam.

Exercise for at least 20 minutes each day

Moving your body every single day doesn’t have to mean a workout. By committing to exercise for 20 minutes a day, you’ve opened up your options to everything from weights, HIIT, Pilates and boxing to every type of cardio, yoga and team sports. And yes, taking yourself for a walk counts!

Go for a movement streak

There’s nothing like the feeling of being “on a roll” with a powerful routine and building a fiery sense of competition with no one but yourself. Setting a streak goal could mean doing daily exercise for a week, three workouts a week for three weeks, or making the time for all of your Sweat Challenge workouts. When you break your streak, rest, reset, and then aim to beat it! 

Fitness Goal

If you want to… Improve your strength 

Beat your plank record by 30-60 seconds

This goal is simple but tough. Start by performing a plank for as long as you can. Record your time, then continue to work on your planks, core and upper body strength for a month before trying to break your record by 30 seconds. If 30 seconds feels easy, aim to beat it by a minute! 

Set a weight lifting goal 

If you’re strength training with weights, setting a weight lifting goal can give your workouts a new sense of purpose. Start by testing your 1 rep max with your chosen exercises to get a gauge of your current strength level, then set a goal that feels challenging but achievable for the next 4-6 weeks! You can also use the weight-logging feature in the Sweat app if you’re following a program such as Lift with Laura, Kelsey Wells’ PWR Strength, or BUILD.

Set an unbroken reps goal 

If you like the idea of a strength goal but heavy weight lifting doesn’t inspire you, what about muscular endurance? Choose an exercise such as burpees, push-ups, squats or pull-ups, and see how many you can complete without stopping for rest. Set yourself a new target and retest yourself in a month! 

Dead-hang for 60 seconds

When it comes to goal setting, you’ve really got to hang in there. A dead-hang is where you hold onto a pull-up bar or gymnastics rings and let your body completely hang in the air without any additional support for as long as you can. If you think a 60-second plank feels like a long time, wait till you try this.

If you want to… Challenge your cardio fitness

Set a distance goal

Whether you’re running, walking, cycling or swimming, you can aim to go further than you ever have before. Common running and walking goals include 5 kilometres, 10 kilometres, or a half or full marathon. If you’re a water lover, your distance will likely be significantly shorter, while cycling goals tend to be significantly longer!

Push for a personal best time

For seasoned regulars with completing set distances, aim to beat your fastest time! You can also try this with cardio machines at the gym for hard and fast sprints, such as a 500m row, one-kilometre bike, or one-mile run.

If you want to… Keep things interesting or expand your skills

Try a new training style each week

If you’re a Sweat member, injecting some variety into your routine is so easy to do thanks to the On Demand section of the app. Each week, these collections of individual workouts give you the freedom to dabble in new training styles whenever it takes your fancy, even if you’re already following another program. 

Change up your location once a week

This is so simple, but can immediately add a sense of novelty to your workout routine. Changing up your location could mean working out in a different area of your house or gym, walking around a new block, driving yourself to hike an unexplored trail, or riding your bike to a different part of town.

Master a challenging exercise or unfamiliar equipment

Make this the year you don’t shy away from the exercises that scare you a little bit! Whether you’ve been avoiding box jumps, gym machines, lifting a barbell, pull-ups, or push-ups on your toes, it’s such a powerful feeling to accomplish something you thought you couldn’t.

Fitness Goal

If you want to… Boost your workout recovery

Set a daily or weekly stretching goal

For many of us, we know we need to stretch, but do we do it enough? Heck no. Depending on your routine, you could aim for one lengthy stretching or recovery session each week, one yoga session (there are plenty in the On Demand section of the app!) or set aside 10 minutes after every workout. 

Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night 

A huge part of workout recovery is simple - getting enough rest. Without adequate sleep, your muscle repair can be impaired, alongside your endurance, strength and muscle growth. The lack of energy and focus that comes with a poor night’s sleep can also increase your risk of injury or burnout. An easy tip? Figure out your wakeup time, then work backwards to set a bedtime alarm. 

Stretch yourself towards a flexibility goal 

If aiming to increase the frequency of your stretching habits isn’t enough to make you stick with it, try setting a physical flexibility goal, such as touching your toes, performing the splits, or holding your hands together when you reach one behind your back and the other over your shoulder. Kelly MacDonald’s mobility workouts from her program Mobility & Strength in Motion have plenty of moves you could choose to work on improving your range of motion!

If you want to… Nourish your body

Drink at least 2 litres of water daily 

When you think about taking better care of yourself and seeing better workout performance by improving what you eat and drink, hydration should always be a top priority. Drinking enough water can help you sleep better, boost your endurance, help deliver nutrients to your cells, lubricate your joints, and improve your cognitive function. 

Have a nutritious breakfast at least 5 days a week

If you’re someone who struggles to power through your morning on an empty stomach or you tend to grab something on the go, a good breakfast could do your energy and overall health a huge favour. A healthy breakfast can give you sustained energy, better mental focus, and ensure you’re getting a hit of nutrients first thing in the morning.

Eat green vegetables daily

Green veggies are incredibly rich in nutrients, making them a great way to level up your daily intake of vitamins and minerals. Leafy greens like spinach and kale work with any meal - even breakfast - but the world of green veg is so much broader than that! Every week you could try cooking with different produce, such as asparagus, broccoli, celery, bok choy, green beans, cabbage or Swiss chard. 

Include fruit or vegetables in every meal

A simple way to make sure you’re eating plenty of nutrients and fibre with each meal is to look at your plate and make sure there’s some fruit or veg looking back at you. Go for variety if you can for a wider range of nutrients - but any fresh produce is great for your health.

Reduce or eliminate alcohol 

Cutting back on booze can be tough if it’s a habitual way you end the day or part of how you socialise, but there are many benefits that make it worthwhile. Besides kicking hangovers out the door, drinking less often leads to better sleep, energy, workout recovery, concentration, productivity, mood and mental performance. It can also help to reduce cholesterol, digestive issues, risk of diseases such as cancer, liver disease, heart attack and stroke, stabilising blood sugar and improving immunity and brain function. Huge wins!

Fitness Goal

If you want to… Prioritise your mental wellbeing 

Make time for self-care

Self-care looks different for everyone. For you, it might mean setting aside some time before you go to bed to dive into a great book while for others it’s about prioritising time in nature. Whatever your self-care practice looks like, set a goal each week to set aside some much needed me-time. After all, you can’t pour from an empty cup. 

Take control of your screen time

Let’s face it, we all spend more time than we need to on our phones. Whether you’re always doomscrolling before bed or are just a bit alarmed by your weekly screen time stats, it’s a good idea to set some goals around how you want to use your phone. That might be by setting time limits on your apps (and sticking to them!) or even embracing a digital detox. Simple goals could include charging your phone in another room so you don’t use it at night, designating screen-free time each day or you could aim higher and try and do a digital detox!

Include mindfulness practices in your routine

Mindfulness practices can be a simple but effective way to reduce your stress levels and improve your mental health, sleep, concentration and overall wellbeing. Whether your goal is to practice gratitude, take up journalling or start meditating, there are so many easy ways to include mindfulness in your routine. Looking for a place to start? Kelsey Wells’ Mindful Strength Sweat Challenge program is a great way to feel strong - inside and out. New year, true you.

Make this your month and your year by setting your next fitness goal today. It’s never too late to start! 

* Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. The above information should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or medical condition. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet, sleep methods, daily activity, or fitness routine. Sweat assumes no responsibility for any personal injury or damage sustained by any recommendations, opinions, or advice given in this article.

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