Starting a new year. Â It is a time for reflection and a time for a clean slate. Â The time when people look to get a fresh start. Â I am not one for New Year’s Resolutions. Â Resolutions fail often and usually fairly quickly. Â Of course, I believe there is a reason for that. Â They are usually too vague. Â “Lose Weight” is a frequently used one, as is “Get Healthy” or “Eat Better.” Â What most of these items lack is focus, or a way to attain or track progress in a meaningful way long term.
Don’t get me wrong, they are all good attributes and things you may wish to attain. Â As I plan to do all of those things, plus a few more like, be less judgmental of others (something I believe in the current climate we live in, needs to be done by many people. Â But I can’t control others, so I will focus on what I can control, and start with me), and being more understanding of the challenges faced by those with other religions, races and even gender. These can all really be shoved under an umbrella of trying to be a better person tomorrow than I am today.
But also, I need more specific goals. Â Things that I can check off and measure for progress as the year goes along. Â So rather than a “resolution(s),” I have set up 16 Goals to Achieve in 2016.
1.Â Swim at least 60 miles Â – I swam a mile for the first time in 2015 and I want to build on that, and by committing to swim at least a mile a week (not necessarily a mile at a time), I should be able to improve my swimming and get closer to my goal of being able to do the swim from Alcatraz one day.
2. Bike at least 100 miles – I am not the biggest fan of cycling, and it is my least favorite part of a triathlon, but I need to start stepping it up and spending more time on the bike.
3. Run at least 300 miles – “running” (or speed walking) was a huge part of my weight loss and improved stamina in 2015. Â If I want to eventually actually get faster and do longer distances, I need to commit to getting the milage in to get my creeky old knees ready to handle it.
4. Â Do an Insane Inflatable 5K – this 5K race looks like a lot of fun. Â And keeping it fun helps keep me from getting board. Â This is a lot like a Mud Run, but without the need for a weeklong bath or risk of dealing with flesh eating bacteria.
5. Do at least 3 Color Run 5K races – I did this many races in 2015 and I see no reason I should do any less. Â Like the Insane inflatable, it helps keep my focus by taking the boredom and/or monotony out.
6. Do at least 10 5K races (including ones listed above) – I am still turtle running through peanut butter slow, and the only way to improve is to keep running as much as I can.
7. Do a 10K – I did my first 8K race this Thanksgiving. Â I see no reason that if I can do 8K that I wouldn’t be able to do a 10K. Â I may be slow, but I still see no reason I can’t pull it off quite easily.
8. Do a half marathon – Setting this as a goal for this year may be aggressive, but let’s be honest, none of us are getting any younger. Â There are 7 seven days in the week and “someday” isn’t one of them.
9. Â Do a Sprint Triathlon – I have done Super Sprint Triathlons the past 3 years. Â I may do a Super Sprint if I can find one (they changed the week of the one I did previously, and it conflicts with my annual vacation), but I am going to set my goals higher and look to do a Sprint level race.
10. Â Lose at least 40 (preferably 50) pounds – I lost as much as 80 (currently at 70) pounds this year. Â The more I lose, the harder it becomes to lose in big chunks, so instead of targeting a doubling of my weight loss efforts, I set a more realistic and attainable goal.
11. Â Make at least 1 new friend – When we are young, we make new friends all the time. Â The only reason we tend to stop doing so is because we shut ourselves out from the world, and rarely allow the opportunity for a new friendship to occur. We allow ourselves to get into a daily rut out of which we almost never venture. Â So we miss out on a lot of Â opportunities to have fun, network and make new acquaintances and friends. Â I intend to change that in myself.
12. Â Reconnect with at least 2 old friends – There are many things that people like to knock Facebook for, but regardless of all the negativity and jokes hurled at it, this has been a fantastic tool for getting in touch with old friends, classmates. Â I have to a certain extent used this to my benefit to stay in contact with a number of old friends, and I look forward to improving those connections and finding a few more to reconnect with in the year to come.
13. Â Do the Red Trail at Bushkill Falls – I have a place with 8 gorgeous waterfalls and some great trails only about an hour drive away, yet I haven’t been there in years, and have always taken one of the shorter trails. Â This year I do the long trail and visit all 8 waterfalls.
14. Â Forgive someone. Â One of the most toxic habits I have (at least I am coming around to understanding that it is toxic), is that I can hold a grudge for a really long time, no I mean a REALLY long time. Â For a few people (especially one nasty aunt) even their death does not reduce the amount of venom I have for them. Â But if this is so toxic and such a waste of my limited time on this planet, why would I continue to do so? Â Old habits are hard to break, and it won’t happen over night, but by forgiving and forgetting for one, hopefully it will become a trend.
15. Â Write at least 180 Blog Posts – I love to write. Â Even more, I love to open dialogs to share and get ideas. Â I hope I can inspire and teach something to someone, and at the same time, I am always learning from the thought and opinions of others that read my blog and/or Facebook posts. Â It is why I started blogging and the reason I need to get back to it. Â Once again, the days of “I don’t have any time” is going to be scrapped as my go to excuse.
16. Â Get out of my comfort zone – While number 15 says I want to write, not only do I want to do that, I want to do something (yet to be determined) that would be worthy of others writing about. Â This is the only one that do not Â have a plan on how I will attain it, but it will be the one that is mostly likely the most satisfying when I get to check it off.
So there you have it, I put it all out there for accountability and possibly to help inspire someone else. Â So, what do you have in your plans for 2016?