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Achieving Goals of Fitness and Health

Stew Smith, CSCS

Nearly on a daily basis, people young and old confide in me with their fitness goals. Too many of these goals are extremely broad and lack focus and many are too narrow in scope and require more elements to succeed.

For example, broad goals are “getting healthy again” or “losing weight”. These can require some to stop over-eating, smoking, drinking soda or other sugary products, as well as start exercising. Anytime someone tries to do all of the above in the same week, they are statistically destined to not be successful.

The opposite problem occurs when someone “wants to do pull-ups”. Depending on their current fitness level, this could require that person to start using weights to strengthen grip, biceps, and back muscles as well as lose weight. Too many people cannot do pull-ups mainly because they carry an extra 20-25 lbs on their frame. And, the common denominator between men and women who can perform pull-ups is “they practice pull-ups 2-3 times a week as part of their weekly workout routine.” See pull-up articles in the Fitness Article page for more ideas.

There is a standard method of achieving your fitness and health goals. Quite simply, it requires baby steps if you are a beginner and a foundation of several elements if you are current active and seeking more advanced goals. These elements are the following:

Moving = EXERCISE. If you add exercise to your world, this will be a shock to the system until you build a habit and create that foundation of fitness earlier discussed. This can be as simple as walking or biking for 10-15:00 everyday or an hour long workout in the gym with a combination of weights and cardio equipment. To do more pull-ups, pushups, or run faster, you have to be already very active, otherwise you need to create the foundation on which to build these follow-on goals. This is why military members who do not exercise but only 1-2 weeks prior to their bi-annual fitness test continually score worse than the year before. To beat last years scores, you need to make your fitness part of your schedule.

Eating – Eating to lose weight or eating a healthy diet with balanced nutrition is a lifestyle that should be adopted over time. When you add exercise to your schedule 4-5 times a week, it is important to increase your water consumption to 2-4 quarts a day. Just add exercise and more water to your world the first month of your exercise schedule. If you see weight loss within the first week or two, you may not need to alter your food intake that much. Your body will also start to drive you toward eating more fruits, vegetables, and protein sources if you have a steady exercise program too. But for more ideas on what to eat see the following links:

Food Options Chart":

Fun Diet Motivator":

Flexibility – Stretching is highly important to increasing scores on fitness tests as well as overall conditioning. Prevention of injuries through a steady flexibility routine before and after each fitness session will enable you to continue exercise and not have to stop your program due to pulled muscles or stiff joints. See the Stretching Plan in FREE 45 Day Plan eBook

Schedule – The final element of successful goal achievement is pacing fitness into your schedule. “If it is not in the schedule – IT does not exist.” An early AM workout is three times easier to accomplish versus a post work fitness session, due to daily conflicts that can easily occur to make you delay or cancel your workout. But as the days get longer during these Spring and Summer months, making that after work workout is a bit easier.

So, hang in there with your goals and keep chugging away – soon the days become weeks and the weeks become months. After a few months of exercise, eating properly, drinking more water, and stretching, you can be faster, stronger, and lose up to twenty pounds.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me at

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  • P23-2_max50


    almost 8 years ago


    I have been working out about 4 times a week for about a month now. I have one month until the pre-academy fitness screening and I have already doubled the amount of push ups and sit ups I could do before I started. PT works!

  • My_lapd_badge_max50


    almost 8 years ago


    PT EVERYDAY before work, a straight up ass kicking, parolee style workout! Go to, get the 50lb short and do at least 45 minutes with the vest on, start light, then build up to 50lbs 3 x a week. You don’t have to do a killer pace with the vest on, but after a week of runing with it on, your duty gear will feel very light! I also mix it up on different days with 8 reps of 1/4 mile sprints followed by pyramids of 20-5 pull-ups, Max out on push-ups, militaries and 50 crunches! The reason I am putting this up isn’t to say “I’m bitchen”, but you have got to have a reality based fitness plan and stick to it! I sit on the bench and simulate sitting in my car then the sprint is the foot pursuit, followed by the wall/fence (pull-ups), then the fight is on. Save a little for the real deal 3 minutes after roll call though! If you don’t think these parolee’s have a fitness plan, or that they are not training to disarm and KILL you, then you are living in denial, and need to get your mind right ASAP, that means extract your head from your A$$ first. You need to train, train, train and train some more. I have had a couple of Officers and above ask me while I’m working out “what are you training for” A fight, wrestling, MMA, a race or some competition?” I tell them I’m training for 3 minutes after roll call, and you should be too! I work down in south central Los Angeles and the fight is on every day. I would feel like a complete tool if I was not there for my partner. I’m 37 and it takes a bit more now a days to keep fit, but dealing with the animals we are dealing with down here, it’s a must! If you don’t have a training plan just start your watch everyday with an apology to your fellow Officers for not being prepared for when the fit hits the shan! Don’t be that guy! Your parner gets killed or injured because you don’t have the wind, you’ll never forgive yourself. Also everyone who caries a gun needs to go to one of Lt. Col Dave Grossman’s seminars! Go to the website and check out The Bullet Proof Mind, the audio is only $60.00, but is the BEST training you will recieve for our profession! Remember it’s better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6! Stay Safe Warriors! Ed O’Shea

  • Kirlian-fingerprints_max50


    almost 8 years ago


    Good info for soon to be officer...

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