"I realize that there are many variables outside my control in my quest, but focusing on the big goal down the road really motivates me. To help me stay focused, I set micro-goals such as races or training achievements that bring me one step closer to being at my best for major goals"

Lance Armstrong, Tour de France winner 5 years in a row, from Sports Leaders and Success

Dr. G’s comments: Want to become a champion like Lance Armstrong? If you really do, then there are two things that you need to know in relation to goal setting. First, you have to do it as a regular part of your training! Think about this. How can you possibly hit a target without first being able to see it? How can you possibly get anywhere worthwhile in your life or sport without first knowing exactly where you want to go? In other words, you have to have a big dream. You have to have something that you’d like to do or accomplish that really captures your imagination and stretches your limits. You have to set a big goal for yourself that both excites you a lot and even scares you a little. Why is having a big goal critically important to your success? That big goal will motivate you. It will give a direction to your efforts. It will help channel your training in a constructive way. Your big goal helps push you outside of your comfort zone and gives you a reason to work hard and sacrifice, both of which are necessary for your ultimate success. When the going gets rough, your back is against the wall and discouragement and failure are knocking loudly at your door, that big goal of yours will give you a reason to keep on keeping on. But DON’T stop there!

The second and very important thing that you must do is to take that big dream of yours and chunk it down into smaller and smaller pieces. In other words, you have to set intermediate, short-term and even daily goals that will all contribute to your achieving that big, scary, long-term goal. The better that you’re able to do this, the more success you’ll have in reaching your dream. By chunking your big goal down into pieces, you give yourself something more manageable and immediate to work on in the present. Your short term goals should always answer the question, “How is what I’m doing today going to help me get to my big goal?” When you practice with this question in mind, your training will always be at a high caliber.

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