Help pack a million meals for struggling seniors on Sept. 11. Volunteer today


AARP Staying Sharp: Keep Your Brain Healthy


The tablet with free 24/7 customer support. Learn More


Military and Veterans Discount


AARP’s Picture Your Retirement Sweepstakes

Enter the $50K Picture Your Retirement Sweepstakes. Ends 8/31/15. No purchase necessary. Enter for Official Rules.


AARP Games - Play Now!

Learning centers

Get smart strategies for managing health conditions.



Heart Disease


Most Popular


Fat to Fit

Set SMART Fitness Goals

Your fitness goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound

To achieve anything of consequence, we need to set goals. But simply having goals isn't enough: We need plans for achieving those goals and the commitment to follow those plans. We also must acknowledge and accept that to achieve one thing we often have to sacrifice another.

See also: Here's the simplest, cheapest weight-loss trick ever.

For instance, the busy executive who chooses an ambitious financial goal and neglects his well-being may not understand the price he will pay in broken health until it is too late. The limitation of setting goals can be compounded by a lack of imagination. How do we create big enough goals? Once we realize our limitations in setting goals, our friends, family members and colleagues who stretch our imaginations become incredibly valuable to us. 

Goals can also be a referendum on the status quo. If, for example, I set a goal to lose weight, that goal reflects my discontent with my current body shape. That can be hard to admit. Yet everything I’ve learned about making progress with weight loss and fitness indicates that acknowledgment and acceptance are essential if I am to make constructive changes. 

Next: Goals help define your future. >>

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts


Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.


Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Walgreens 1 discount membership aarp

Members can earn 50 points per $1 spent on select health & wellness products at Walgreens.

member benefit aarp hear usa

Members save 15% on easy listening devices and more at the HearUSA Hearing Shop.

Eye Med 4 Membership Benefit AARP Discount

Members save up to 60% on eye exams and 30% on glasses at Target Optical.

Membership Benefits Discounts Email Genius

Brain boost? Get AARP email for access to memory exercises & more that help you focus.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points