With how much I have going on on any given day and how much I value personal growth, goal setting is something that I try to check in with on a regular basis. What's important for me to remember when I do, is to set realistic and achievable goals.
At times we just want to shoot for the moon because we think we know what we want our "end result" to be, but what I've learned is that looking too far ahead can end up being detrimental. It might be well-intentioned to be ambitious at the start but then you just have this concept on the horizon with no concrete steps to get there. This is why so many goals never get achieved or get forgotten in our fast-paced lives.
For me, I have so many ideas and goals floating through my head that I have to break them down or I'll never get anything done and never be satisfied. For example, I knew my approximate projected mile time for my latest half marathon and I could have made an exact calculation of where I wanted to finish, but I decided to set a realistic goal for the race. Sometimes you run faster or slower on the event day than in training, weather throws you off, or injuries creep up, so I decided that I'd be happy if I ran it under a certain time threshold, rather than restricting myself to such a specific parameter. I ended up meeting my goal and being only ten minutes off of where that specific time would have put me. However, if I had obsessed over that projected time I know the end of my race would have been hung up on those last ten minutes, rather than being proud that I PR'ed by almost 20 minutes - a huge personal accomplishment! I knew my body and respected the enormity of the distance to give myself a goal I knew I had the ability to safely achieve. And now because I accomplished that goal I feel excited and confident in both setting and achieving my next goal for the next race I'll run!
Many might think that it's odd to calculate and set goals in a way that will make them achievable, but for me, that is how they get accomplished. Ask yourself how many goals you have, how many you've accomplished and how many you have left, are you settinglofty goals that are never even being touched? Maybe for some that's a good way to live, knowing whatever you're working towards is for something larger, but for me, I need concrete steps to know that I'm improving different aspects of myself on a regular basis.
Currently, I'm touching base with myself and setting some new goals for my fitness after just coming off of half marathon training. It's summer here and I want to try to get outside as much as possible, I'd also like to take advantage of more friends being accessible and willing to try new things (summer brings out people's adventurous/athletic sides I'm finding,) and utilize every extra hour of sunlight that I have! For now here are my goals for summer (I also threw in some of my nutritional/personal wellness ones too!):
- Do one workout a week outside of my comfort zone (so far hot pilates has been this for me, and it's majorly kicking my butt!)
- Hike! (maybe every couple of weeks on days off, Sundays or planned trips with friends)
- Get out on my road bike at least ONCE!
- Add speed work into my running regime
- Less meat (I really can't make the leap to vegetarianism, especially in the summer I do crave seafood, but I just feel my body wanting and needing less of it lately and want to be conscientious of how I'm nourishing myself more in the warmer month.)
- Don't forget about water (I drink about 80oz a day, but with hotter temperatures and being outside more I want to make sure I'm staying hydrated.)
- (this goal is always one that I'm reminding myself to do) SLEEP, get to bed at a reasonable hour, especially if I'm getting up to run.
- Take quiet time for me and do regular self-check in's.