Tag Archive | realistic goals

Under Pressure

There is usually a lot of pressure this time of year for people to be expected to make a resolution. To give something up. To start a new habit. To make a change in their life. It’s expected. It’s supposed to be normal. It’s a must. I am not sure if this pressure is only in the US or if this is a world phenomonom, but it definitely is one here.

The funny thing is that no one really expects you to keep your said resolutions. They just want you to make them. Like a way of pointing out something that is wrong in your life that needs to be better or changed. Truth is that we know that most people don’t even keep their resolutions. I read something that only 8% of people keep their resolutions and most don’t even make it till the end of the month. So basically we are setting ourselves up for failure. Why bother? When I started this fitness journey it wasn’t because of a New Year’s resolution. It was because I put my mind to accomplish something. It started in September the year my youngest started school and I started hitting the gym.

We have all seen it. The days when we were allowed to pack into the gym that come January the gym would be uncomfortably packed (even pre-covid), but by mid February things were somewhat back to “normal.” As a gym goer, we were happy to have the space back but think of how those on the other end felt. Not just them, but ourselves when we faltered on our own resolutions.

Failure never feels good even if expected. So why do year after year we fall into this trap? Part of it might be because of expectations. Part of it may be because we have eaten so poorly over the holiday’s that our spare tire looks like it belongs on a tractor. Part of it may be the shorter days of winter make us long for more movement because the couch is our best friend. This basically sums up not just the holiday’s for me, but probably most of 2020.

I am looking forward to 2021. I am looking forward to the way it ends because sadly it is going to follow 2020 when it starts which basically mean that the suck is going to continue for a bit………. But there is some hope. Vaccines are beginning to roll out. We are going to have a change of administration where science will be leading factor. We are learning more about the spread of the virus and how to treat it. We as a society, as a country, as a world want to just return to ” normal” and the only way to do that is just to keep doing what we are doing. But hopefully by spring……. by spring….. by spring…. after surviving this long winter of 2020 we can move forward.

As a recap of 2020, I give you the Match.com add which sums it up perfectly for the dumpster fire of a year.

So with that being said, I am making no resolutions. I have thought of some things I would like to do when the world opens again – Shhhh don’t tell anyone, but I think another Sprint Triathlon might be a way to start my racing career all over again. It worked the first time! Until then, I have started a virtual 2021 challenge with 3 friends. Collectively we will complete 2021 miles. I’ve done the math and it is only 505.25 miles per person a year. Broken down to 42 a month and break it even further only 10.5 a week. Not bad at all…..

At this time, I am not joining any other virtual races/events. I did several in 2020 and while they were motivating to get out for miles if I do any in 2021 I want to treat them more like events than just another run. Until then, I am just going to keep plugging away making no resolutions but still wanting to make a change.

Do you make resolutions? More importantly…. do you keep them?

Living in Reality

There is a song I remember singing in church as a kid.

“It only takes a spark to get a fire going. And soon all those around can warm up in it’s glowing.”

I’m not sure why out of all the songs we sang this one stuck with me, but it did.

Anyhoo…..

I’ve been humming it recently because I have been feeling a spark again. A spark of fire. A spark of motivation. A spark to do more. I am not sure where it is coming from, but I like it. I am feeding the low flame to keep it from burning out. I think it is easier to snuff out the flame of motivation then to get the flame burning brightly. I miss the fire. I miss the motivation.

This 30 day challenge has been very helpful. Some days I will take forever to get motivated to get into the garage aka home gym, but once I’m there I never regret it. I also realize that one thing that I often do is going in flaming hot and then burn out. Push too hard. Do too much. Don’t pace myself and make it unsustainable.

There is no reason to do any of that. The goal is to keep moving. I am not training for anything.

The summer before my surgery left me Hypopara I ran the NYC Half in the Spring 1:58:59 for a pace of 9:04. I ran a local 5K in the summer in 26:26 with a pace of 8:30. Then just weeks before my surgery I ran the NYC Marathon in 4:56 with pace of 11:18 and while that may not seem stellar that was due to not running a smart race. I literally, figuralively, and realistically was at my physical peak in 2016. I was ready to chase that 4;15 marathon. I had unlimited energy. There was no stopping me………. or so I thought.

We all know the expression, Nothing is impossible. One it’s face everyone wants to cheer it but really it’s not true. Some things are impossible. Some goals will never be reached not for lack of will but due to reality. We have to create goals that are within reach. If I were to set a goal to PR a race right now, I realistically would not be able to reach it. But if I were to set a goal to finish a race (if there were such a thing as live events), then that would be in reach. So in life it isn’t so much as failing at our goals, but setting goals that our realistically attainable. Just because goals are attainable does not mean that that you don’t need to work and work hard to reach them.

In thinking of where I want to go with my fitness goals, I think I need to readjust how I am setting them. I’ve been focusing on pace with my running but I think at this time I need to think about training by heart rate for a while. From there I will then be able to determine what realistic goals I can set with my running. Until then I will just learn more about heart rate training. In working with weights if I tried to lift weights like I did in my Crossfit days, I would injure myself. Why would I think it would be any different with running.

So here is to living in reality and working with what you’ve got. I’ve got a lot to work with mostly my ability to keep plugging along and not give up. So I will just keep plugging along.