This is the time of year when most people are thinking about and setting goals for next year. Setting a goal is easy. Setting a tough, challenging, but ultimately achievable goal requires a little more thought. A lot of people set their goals and think they are done with it, it will magically happen as long as they keep doing what they have in the past. For most, this is the path to not achieving their goals and realizing their potential.
The next step after setting a goal is to plan out your path to achieve it. And since others before you have probably had a very similar goal there is plenty of good information and plans available to get you there; you do not have to reinvent the wheel, you need only ask and look around.
This year I missed hitting 2 of my major goals for the year. One I missed because of not properly training for it. A 5k time goal requires speed work, not simply a lot of mileage as I found out much to my dismay. Poor planning on my part and mostly ignoring the experience of others. Lesson learned. My other missed goal was a distance goal. I planned and trained well for it, my execution was lacking. I made a simple mistake, I started out faster than I should have and paid the price in the end.
Missing a goal is not the end of the world and some of them may take years to achieve. Missing a goal simply provides another opportunity to learn. What did you do wrong? How can you change your training to improve?
One thing you need to do as the year starts no matter what your goal is to get a good baseline for where you are currently at. If the goal is purely a distance goal that is relatively easy as you probably already know how far you can go. A pace goal however needs a good current time to work from so if you have not run the distance at race pace then you need to do that before you start your training so you can accurately chart your training plan and assess your progress.
Set a goal. Make a plan. Follow the plan. Crush your goal. Repeat cycle.
Simplicity itself. Now go do it!
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