You’ve got goals! You have fitness goals that maybe you set a new years resolution or maybe an event is coming up and you just want to look or feel a certain way. Or, maybe you just want to start taking time for yourself. Perhaps you want to start putting your overall health first! All of these reasons are good and valid. And, your Pilates instructor while not a magician is someone you can articulate how you want to look and feel. The beauty of finding a Pilates instructor that is right for you is that they become your partner in crime. They become accountability and help you reach your personal health goals.
But, you have to know what your goals are and share them with your Pilates instructor in order to hit them. Now, before we go into goal setting a couple things. There are some things Pilates can do and other things that can happen but are not necessarily what Pilates is all about.
Pilates can: strengthen you, help with flexibility, posture, balance, alignment, and stress. I truly believe that Pilates is a strength based workout that makes everything you are already doing better. Can you lose weight doing Pilates? Sure, but truthfully, all exercise is helpful for weight loss but true weight loss happens in the kitchen. If weight loss is a goal of yours I would search for a good dietician or nutritionist.
Pilates cannot: turn you into someone you are not. It cannot make you look like any celebrity or your teacher. Pilates can have some cardio effects but isn’t the same as a cardio workout. Pilates has some yoga-like aspects but is not yoga. So, if you’re needing meditation, cardio or a good HIIT class then please do those in addition to Pilates.
But, if your personal goals are realistic and specific and you have shared them with your instructor and they feel they are able to help you meet them then get ready for a Pilates adventure ahead! Because when you know who you are and what you want and you find the Pilates teacher that is right for you then there will be no stopping you!
Now, let’s talk about how to get your goals in the right place:
1) Get Super Real: I want to look like Jennifer Aniston too! Jessica Biel and a few others also come to mind. But, the truth is, no matter how great a teacher is my body is my own and so I need to keep that in mind. Instead of telling your instructor that you want to become like someone else. Set a realistic goal for your body! For example, if you are looking to get stronger, have the energy to keep up with friends and family and feel younger on the inside that is a good thing. You can tell your teacher about a time you felt strong or energized.
2) Get Specific: What is it that you desire to feel when you leave your Pilates session? What is it that you are hoping your Pilates session can give you? When do you want to or need to feel like your goals are being met?
3) Deadlines: When can you start working towards your own goals? When are you free for these sessions? How often can you come to work with your teacher? And, when do you want or need to feel results? If you are ready to commit and have created space to make your goals reality then your instructor can be honest with you about the realisticness of your deadlines and desires. And, if they cannot give you the time you need then you’ll know to find someone who can. Don’t confuse their unavailability with their inability. Hopefully, they will be honest with you about the realisticness of your goals and deadlines and if they cannot meet your needs they will pass you off to someone who can.
4) Commit: When you know what you want and when you want it and you’ve found the instructor who is the best fit for you then show up! Every session you miss or skip or postpone delays you. Your instructor can be the most amazing teacher out there but if you don’t show up he or she cannot make magic happen! And, maintain a person Pilates practice! Do your homework or mat work at home on your own.
5) Have Fun: Pilates and most other workouts are amazing for a lot of reasons. And, yes, they can help you meet many of your fitness goals. But, if you’re not having fun then what is the point? It’s just Pilates. It’s easy to feel like you are not good enough or not getting somewhere but Pilates is compounding. The more you show up you add another layer to your abilities. And layers add up! Pilates and other workouts are not punishments for what you ate or indulged in. They are assistants in strengthening your body, facilitators of movement and growth.
If you are struggling to find a teacher or you have one but need to get your Pilates in more comment or contact me. The beauty of Pilates is that you can supplement your workouts with some mat classes like mine. And/or I can help set you up with another instructor in your area to help you out!
Goal and get it my Pilates lovers!