Ten years gone

I shall start this first post of the year by wishing both of my readers a very happy New Year. I hope you enjoy reading this one. I can guarantee it’s the best thing I’ve written this decade so far.

Christmas and New Year were very enjoyable and different to what I’m used to, but in a good way. In the midst of all the festivities also was a house move, which, truth be told, is still ongoing. Towards the Christmas break however, I could, and still can, feel my general confidence level plummeting. There are probably many reasons as to why this is happening. One thought might be that so much happened to me last year, mostly in the summer, as well as achieving so many of my goals. By the end of September, I had had my first ever DNF and was almost definitely at the mercy of a potentially long-term injury. Two very unusual events for me as I’ve lived a seemingly charmed life in my physical activity existence. Being injured has held me back a little and I do feel out of shape, feeling reluctant to push myself like I used to.

My new tradition (second year) is competing in RED (Run Every Day) January. I headed out for run number two and felt up against it so decided to push it a bit and by the time I got home, I felt like I used to years ago when I first started to run seriously – fairly sweaty, suitably pushed and most importantly, buoyant on endorphins. It left me very satisfied and feeling raring to go for my next session, so I am able to see the positive in my fitness slipping.

With last year being pinned down by three ultra marathons, a Fan Dance and two Paras 10 races, I feel 2020 should be a return after a three year absence to road marathons to rediscover why I run to begin with. In true me style, I have set myself the goal of running a marathon in April in under three hours and fifteen minutes. I think currently, I’m in the four hour mark, and my personal best from my peak is three hours twenty-something, so I have a lot of work to do. Symbolically, the marathon will be exactly ten years since my first marathon, so there will be plenty of parallels to be drawn on many fronts. It’s definitely been ten years of complete change so I will more than likely be quite reflective throughout the whole thing.

I am hoping the marathon will be exactly what I need to put me somewhere near halfway to feeling like I’m actually good at something.

Happy New Year!

I want to start this post by wishing you all a very Happy New Year, and carrying on with the positive hope that you all achieve what you are hoping for.

It’s that time of year where everything can feel brand new, like the reset button has been pressed and we all have another go at it to be better. The gym car park this morning was full of people with that fitness or weight loss intention!

As I make my way to work this morning, there is a strange other worldly, almost zombie-like stream of people wandering about, trying to remember what they do for a job, vaguely knowing they’re in the right place after ten days off. The Christmas lights still adorn the lamposts, the shops still have festive window displays, and littered around are hints at what may have happened with new year revellers – a bit of tinsel blowing across the street, smashed glasses and pieces of discarded clothes.

New year can also be a time of reflection. For me it was looking back at everything that I achieved in 2018, not just physically, but mentally as well. Following this comes the thinking of how it can be built on, continuing the momentum. I’ve found in my life that major changes can come from small adjustments made over time. Like when I started reducing the sugar I had in my tea, slowly until I began having it without. It’s better than just going cold turkey. That will be the same for me this year, making small tweaks to what I did last year, making everything part of the routine.

Small changes does still mean you can dream big though. They give you the confidence and impetus to push on through to get what you’re looking for. One thing I try to remember though is to stay as humble as I can throughout, instead of bulldozing my way towards a goal, treading on other people along the way.

So if you’re reading this, maybe on your way back to work, have a think. What are your aims for 2019? I wish you the very best!