The Best Day to Start Your New Goal

Fitness & Training Tips
By Marek

About Marek

I believe that I haven´t reached my full CrossFit potential and have plenty of room for improvement, as an athlete and as a coach. Becoming a part of Ignite brings me a step closer to fulfilling my dreams and I’ll do my best to help all of you to reach yours.
Goals have been around for as long as our planet has life. What has changed, is how much of our lives are occupied by goal pursuit.
In the past goals were mostly about survival. We hunted for food and preened for attractive mates, and these activities critical to the survival of our species. Our species would never have survived had our ancestors spent their time pursuing goals for not good reasons.
When food and energy were scarce, the guy who climbed the nearest mountain or ran a marathon wouldn’t last too long. But today food and energy are abundant and you can live happy long life choosing to take on any goals you’d like.
And so we go on setting one goal after another. Especially when it comes to exercise everything can be measured. How many calories you burn, how many laps you run, how many reps you do and so on. And if you went 11000 steps yesterday, you don’t want to go less than that today.
Numbers pave the road to obsession and simple goal setting can turn into a nightmare and you spend way more time chasing the goal than you do enjoying the fruits of your success.
In moderation, personal goal setting makes sense. It tells us how to spend our limited time and energy. So if you choose to do some goal setting, here is a quick run down of the most recent research into goal setting.
Knowing when is the best day to effectively start pursuing them can help, right? Research published in the journal Psychological Science has found a piece of advice for those wanting to start a new goal off right. These researchers found that when you begin can give you more motivation to start your goals.
So what’s the best day to start a new goal?
Most motivational gurus would tell you, “Today!” It’s true that you don’t have to wait for any particular date to start pursuing your goals. However, researchers found that certain days are more effective than others.
That particular day? Saturday, or what would be considered Saturday for your schedule.
While you may think Saturdays would be the toughest day to begin a new goal, because it marks the end of the work week; it is actually the best day of the week to start getting after your goals. At least when it’s just a normal week in the year. You are better rested, more relaxed, and have the energy to devote to your new goal.
To be honest, the research gets a little more complex than that. It’s not necessarily Saturday. It’s what Saturday signifies. Other great days to start goals can be your birthday, New Year’s, or any other day you have off.
Setting smart goals is important. And starting them is a pretty big deal. Why? It marks the beginning of change.
When we want to make a change to our diet or health, we recognise we want to be a better version of ourselves. We don’t want to dwell on old behaviours or failures. The past is the past. People are motivated when they start with a clean slate. A new start gives us motivation to pursue new goals. They move on from past failure and focus on the new, better version of themselves. And what easier way to do this then on Saturday and Sunday! Researchers call this date a “temporal landmark”. This is why Saturday gives us more motivation than other days of the week. Because it’s the end of an old week. It signals a fresh start.
This works even better if Saturday has greater meaning for you, such as a birthday, a holiday, or an anniversary. They are highly significant points in time. So starting goals on these dates seems to give us more motivation to initiate goals.
As the researchers note, the abundance of fresh start opportunities throughout the year offers repeated chances for people to attempt positive self-change, so even if they initially fail, they may subsequently succeed.
So the big takeaway here? Use Saturday and Sunday to help you initiate your goals. If you’re starting it during any old week of the year, Saturday is the best day. But if you can start it on a Saturday that has personal meaning to you, even better.