Setting your plan for the new year

How to effectively plan your 2018 through to success.


Happy New Year everybody!

2018 is officially underway and many of you will have smashed the festive season both personally and professionally. Now is the time of year that you should be either be preparing a plan for the next twelve months or just starting one. Given this focus that many of you will have, we’ll begin the year by looking into how to effectively prepare for a year of activity and set out your plan from start to finish. We’ll look in-depth at what steps to take when deciding on goals and targets to hit, how to record how you’re performing and make change, altering your goals without affecting your performance and following your plan to a tee. This topic will run for four weeks and we’ll try to break each section down for you into manageable chunks so you can take the advice and implement it into your own life.

So let’s begin by thinking about the important focus for your own plan for the year and see what variables you might have to deal with in 2018. This week we’ll describe the challenges some of you will face when creating a plan and try to nail down the key areas of focus when considering a plan for 2018.

When thinking of planning your year out there many factors that could affect what you can actually physically achieve. These could be but are not limited to:

  • Working life
  • Personal circumstances
  • Free time
  • Travel
  • Cost
  • Holidays

These are just a few of the things you’ll maybe have to consider when deciding how best to attack the new year and prepare a plan for your own training and development goals. There are many factors that can affect making a plan but the key is to narrow down what could stand in your way and work around them.

For the first part of the year you’ll want to set yourself smart targets and realise that not everything you wish to achieve is going to happen instantly. Take stock of what your position is for life and your training position with your health situation being one of the biggest things you can measure at this early stage. Be sure to use the following acronym to make your goals reachable and work for you:

S - Specific plans for you to narrow your vision and be something you can work toward

M - Measurable plans so you can record progress or a decrease in workload

A - Achievable plans for you and your own current situation. These can change with time

R - Realistic plans mean you’ll never be disappointed or working toward something out of reach

T - Timely plans will make sure you are achieving your goals in a set out time frame


The above idea is to make sure that you are not making a plan for the new year that will not be achievable or waste your own time. It’s highly important to narrow your vision of what you want from the year and be sure to set SMART goals that you can achieve so your plan isn’t an entire waste of time. Be sure to take the time to set out your plan with an eye on what time you have to achieve your goals and to factor time in along the journey so you can review things if alterations are needed.

A rough idea of a plan is always good to work on first and you can change this at any point if it isn’t what you feel like is going to work for the remainder of the year. Just like your training goals and your body it’s completely acceptable and expected that you alter plans considering your own position with life and how you feel. Below is a basic example of a plan for the year for a trainer who is building a stronger body and better physique and you can use this as a starting base with a view to developing your own planner.










Training goal

Lift 80kg BPress


Start HIIT training


Swim 500m/week


Lift 100kg LPress


Diet goal

Eat 5 meals/



Reduce carbs intake


Begin Creatine cycle


Increase Amino intake


Life goal

Get promotion


Alter CV


Book Holiday


Save spending money



As you can see from the above each month has been split into three areas of specific and SMART goals. These should be three areas of life that most should focus on and be high in priority a yearly plan. The months goals are achievable and measurable and are monitored so you can check back and see how well you’ve done in staying on track. You can develop this kind of planner with more information, more goals for different areas and most importantly you can break down each month into a monthly planner much in the same mould but for each week. There’s no right or wrong way to plan for this new year but you should try to focus on how best to record your own training and life journey to have a reference point so you can reflect on what happened and maybe why it happened that particular way.

However you decide to begin your planner you simply have to begin to plan. It’s a great tool for people from any walk of life and even more so if you have a lot of things happening in your life and you want to reach some form of schedule because of this. You can always research the best ways to plan for the year and you can alter it as many times as you want. Personalise your plan with goals and areas of life that you know will mean something to you and you’ll want to work towards. It’ll be an ever changing programme for you to review and you’ll always have a chance to change on-the-go with many apps available on tablets and smartphones. If you’ve never made a plan for the year before, then 2018 is your chance to give it a go and to see if you find it useful to your own training and your own lifestyle.

Written by:

Taeo Robinson

Taeo Robinson

What would you improve in this article?

The content could be...