Over the years, I’ve sometimes set out “beginning of the year” goals for myself. I’ve always been reluctant to call them “resolutions,” because “resolving” to do something sounds so final. What if I don’t complete a resolution, due to circumstances beyond my control? Does that mean I failed? Instead, I like to call them “goals.” Semantics, maybe, but hey, it’s my blog so I’ll call them goals.
Anyway, the thing about goals or resolutions is that you need to be able to measure them. “Get in shape” isn’t quantifiable, so how do you know if you succeeded? Plus, it’s awfully vague. So, I’ve done my best to set out quantifiable goals.
- Qualify for the Boston Marathon. Honestly, this is my biggest goal right now, and it’s why I removed my “run another ultra and hopefully a 50-miler” goals for this year. This requires me to run a 3:39:59 marathon by September. I’m currently 7 minutes, 23 seconds from that goal, and I have a leg that’s preventing me from doing much running. In fact, I need to call the doctor… So, we’ll see how that goes.
- Set a personal record (PR) in the marathon. This is the “plan b” to No. 1 above. So, run a 3:47:21 or faster. I’d really like to do this at the New Jersey Marathon in late April, if my leg will cooperate.
- Run sub-1:45 in a half-marathon. I only need to get faster by 21 seconds in order to meet this goal, but again, I have the grumpy leg. (I’m running a half-marathon in a few weeks, but the PR won’t happen there. Maybe in August?)
- Do a century bike ride. A few years ago, I bicycled 45 boring miles. So it’s no small task to more than double that distance, especially since it would be a lot easier on a road bike than on my hybrid bike. Doable? Yes. Will I actually do it? Hmmm. I need cycling companions for this one, I think. Any takers?
- Run a total of 1,500 miles. I ran 1,401.91 miles in 2013, so it’s doable IF my body will cooperate.
- Bike a total of at LEAST 700 miles (spin classes count). I biked 668.65 miles in 2013, with only 38 of them outside. Both numbers need to improve.
- Go to the gym at least 150 times during the year. This would be about three times a week, while I averaged closer to twice a week in 2013, so this will require some vigilance. I need a better way to track this, but at least I can manually count in my training logs.
- Read at least one book a month. That’s pathetic when considering that I used to read more than 50 books a year. The Internet is to blame for this. And maybe the TV.
- Cook dinner more often. Grapefruit and popcorn (not simultaneously) are not really dinner. I can usually follow a recipe, but the challenge is to plan ahead so I have the ingredients and can try to do some prep on the weekend. I need a way to quantify this one, because “cook more” breaks my own goal-setting guidelines. Any ideas?
- Go to bed at 10 p.m. Ideally, go to bed at 9:30 p.m. and read until 10. My phone goes into “do not disturb” mode at 10 p.m., to prevent me from seeing texts and notices after that point — unless I’m still on my phone. That happens all too often, thanks to social media. (I love all of you.)
- Get down to [undisclosed number because I’m self-conscious] pounds. It’s about 10 pounds less than what I weigh now. That’s a whole bag of potatoes I wouldn’t have to carry with me when running! No, I don’t have a weight problem or an eating disorder. No, losing about 10 pounds will not harm me.
- Blog an average of twice a week. Honestly, the Tuesday Time-Wasters (which I revived last month) are fun and easy. So I really only need to come up with other content once a week in order to meet this goal. That said, this is my blog and I’m not paid for it, so I’m not going to cry if I don’t actually log 104 blog posts this year.
- Find a cheaper place to live.
OK, that’s a baker’s dozen list of goals. It will either be a lot of success or a lot of failure. Here goes 2014!