Short-term SMART goals support lifestyle changes that propel you toward your long-term wellness goals. Creating SMART goals will help you clarify your ideas, focus on what you need to do to accomplish a task, be more productive, and increase your likelihood of achieving your goals.
The SMART goals below are short-term, weeklong goals. Aim to follow the goals you create for a week and then decide if you want to continue to follow that exact goal or if you want to change your goal. For example, you could modify the foods included, the activity itself, or the day it will be completed.
If you have access to Ixcela’s Recipe, Mindfulness, and Fitness Libraries, use these resources to support your goals.
Include a variety of fiber-rich foods daily
I will include 1 cup of vegetables (broccoli, spinach, onion, bell pepper, etc.) in an omelet for breakfast on Monday through Friday this week.
I will eat a piece of fruit, either an apple or a pear, as an afternoon snack every day this week.
I will eat 1 cup of berries after dinner on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
On Sunday, I will prepare a vegetable stir-fry with quinoa to have for lunch on Monday through Thursday. On Friday, I will have a spinach salad from my favorite take-out restaurant.
I will include 3 different vegetables in my lunches every day this week and enjoy a serving of fruit as an afternoon snack.
I will put my fork down between bites during dinner on Thursday night. I will invite anyone else at the table to do this exercise with me.
This week, before deciding whether to eat a morning and afternoon snack, I will drink 8 ounces (236 ml) of water and assess my hunger.
I will block 45 minutes for lunch every day this week to ensure I have time to sit and eat my lunch slowly.
Try mindfulness-based stress reduction
I will wake up 15 minutes early on Monday and Wednesday this week to sit quietly and complete a stretching sequence before I get ready for the day.
I will go outside and take 10 deep breaths after lunch on Monday through Friday this week.
I will complete a 10-minute guided meditation on Saturday morning.
I will go for a relaxing 2-mile walk in nature on Sunday morning. I will invite my partner to join me.
When I get home from work, I will change into workout clothes and sit quietly for 5 minutes thinking about how I want to finish my day. I will ask myself the following questions:
What can I do to peacefully bring my day to a close?
What activities can I do this evening that will support my goals and make me feel accomplished?
What went really well today?
Do I want to carve out time for exercise this evening?
(Your own meaningful question)
This week, I will listen to calming music for 10 minutes after breakfast/lunch/dinner to support digestion and clear my mind before moving on to other activities.
Take time for journaling and logging
I will complete the following journal entries before bed:
Tuesday: Body scan and write
Close your eyes and take a deep belly breath. Starting from the top of your head, mentally scan your body. Once you have visualized how you are feeling from your head to your toes, write down your assessment of how you feel physically. Do you have any pains, tight spots, or tension?
Thursday: List five or more things that inspire you.
Sunday: Write yourself a letter. Include positive affirmations and words of encouragement.
To jump-start my week, I will take time for journaling on Sunday evening.
Journaling prompts: Why do you put effort into your health and wellness? What makes you excited to do activities that support your health?
On Saturday morning, I will read the Mindful Journaling and Logging resource in the Ixcela Mindfulness Library, complete one exercise, and then go for a relaxing 1-mile walk.
I will add intensity to my workout on Monday and Wednesday by finishing with a 10-minute cardio blast on the treadmill.
I will walk at least 7,000 steps every day this week.
I will increase my step goal to 10,000 steps on Saturday.
I will complete a home workout from the Ixcela Exercise Library at 6 am on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. (Choose a different workout for each day.)
I will go to the gym after work on Tuesday and Thursday and complete 40 minutes of strength training and 10 minutes of stretching.
I will go for a 3-mile walk in place of an intense cardio session on Saturday.
I will take a rest day on Wednesday and spend 20 minutes stretching after dinner.
I will change my exercise routine from 6 days per week to 4 days per week for the next 2 months.
Include more restorative activities
On Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday mornings, I will stretch and foam roll for 15 minutes.
I will schedule a monthly massage for myself for the next 3 months.
I will wake up 10 minutes early on Monday through Friday this week to complete 5 minutes of light stretching and deep breathing.
Include varied exercises throughout the week
I will create a weekly workout schedule, including type of exercise, duration, and rest days to ensure I am adding 2 types of cardio training (Tuesday and Thursday) and 3 days of strength training (Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday).
I will go for a hike in place of a long running or biking session on Saturday morning.
I will go to a new fitness class on Sunday morning.
SMART goals will help to set you up for success throughout the Ixcela program, but remember that things don’t always go as planned, and that is ok! Aim to set goals that will excite and motivate you, and avoid setting lofty goals that will cause stress. Check out the Ixcela resources to learn more about the latest research and how gut health supports athletic performance and everyday life.