So it's not that establishing a goal plays no part in your success, it's that once the goal is established and you have laid out what you need to do, you MUST forget about the goal and focus on the execution. This is absolutely necessary to succeed because:
You Are Romantic...
...and goals are much more attractive to think about than prepping your lunch and dinner, packing your workout clothes, and setting your alarm for 4:30am in order to get your workout in before the roller coaster of a day begins.
At this point, thinking about your goal is a romantic fantasy that is taking your focus away from the execution of your plan. The key here is to find pleasure in the process. Enjoy the small victories of setting training personal record's, successfully sticking to your dietnone day at a time, and even things like getting enough sleep or managing stress with meditation.
These are the things that must be executed on top of your normal daily schedule, and focusing on your goal means you aren't focusing on the execution of the plan.
I'm NOT saying there isn't time to remind yourself of your goal whenever you need a kick in the butt, but it is important that little reminder of what your goal is doesn't turn into a 'what-if' fantasy that will end up taking away focus from the daily execution of your plan that will ultimately get you there.
Thinking Leads to Overthinking...
....and over thinking leads to negative thinking.
When your focus lies too heavily on your end-goal, you ultimately begin to think about how far away you are from that goal, how long it will take to hit that goal, and question if you even have what it takes to go the distance. This leads to a lot of negative feelings about the goal, yourself and the process.
Focusing on your goal and the current distance between you and it is a great way to feel terrible about ever achieving said goal. Feeling terrible about yourself and your ability to reach your goal will lead to self-sabotage because you will experience bouts of "I'll never get there anyway so what's the point?" During these low points is when you will skip the gym, eat whatever will make you feel better, and stay up late infomercials. This is an obvious set back and could have been avoided if the focus was on executing the plan day-by-day instead of keeping the focus too far ahead to something that at some point will feel achievable.
Once your goal is established and the plan is laid out, its time to shut off your brain and execute, one day at a time. Focus on the smallest of steps, one step at a time.
You Can't Control the Outcome....
...but that is where all your energy is going.
It's very important when shooting to succeed at a fitness (or any) goal that you pour your energy into the factors you can control. The outcome, in EVERY single case is not one of those factors.
There is certainly a desired outcome, which is why we began this process in the first place. This outcome dictated the course of action, and the tasks that need to be executed daily in order to reach the goal. But once the course of action is dictated, all of your energy needs to be shifted to the ACTION, not the outcome.
The human body is amazing, and can be extremely tricky whenever we set out to change it. Weight loss comes in bursts and you never really know when it will happen, muscle is built very slowly and day to day changes are rarely noticeable. These are outcomes that can drive you nuts if you focus on them. But if you focus on executing the process, knowing that you are doing everything to the best of your ability and a daily step-by-step basis, whatever the outcome is will be exactly what you earned based on the work you put in.
That may not sound fair, but it is as fair as it gets. The outcome you receive will be directly correlated with how smart, hard, and consistently you executed your plan. This is why it is imperative that you take your focus off of the one aspect that you cannot control (outcome) and shift your energy into all of the factors you CAN control, like training, nutrition, stress management and rest.
This is why we don't focus on goals here. We focus on daily execution of the plan, and you should too.
Wait, what? A fitness coach who says he and his clients don't focus on GOALS? That is 100% correct.
It sounds counter-intuitive and it sounds....wrong. Goals are the destination. Goals are the guiding factor that dictate how you will eventually arrive to them, how can goals NOT be the focus?
Let me explain.
We don't focus on goals here, we focus on execution and the process. Goals need to be established initially, that is a necessity. But once the goal is established, you create your plan which is based around that goal. However, once that plan is created you FORGET about the goal, and shift your undivided attention to the daily execution of that plan.