We are quickly approaching the end of 2011, which inevitably means new year’s resolutions are soon to follow. People will make promises to themselves that “this year will be different,” only to abandon their resolve to change by February or March and sometimes much sooner.
Well, you know what? 2011 was different for me. I ran my first half marathon, I competed in my first figure competition, I started graduate school, and I finally started and kept up with a blog. Those are all pretty great accomplishments, many of which I have been wanting to do for years! In fact, 2011 is really the first year that I have set and achieved this many goals in a long time. It is easy to just let life happen to you and lead a life of inaction, being pushed and pulled and beaten down. That is surely what I have done in years past – partly due to laziness, partly due to fear, and partly due to not believing in myself.
I never thought I had the discipline to compete in figure. I never thought I could run a half marathon because I wasn’t “a runner” and had always hated running. I was afraid of starting graduate school and realizing I wasn’t interested in what I was studying or that I wouldn’t be able to finance it. I was my own obstacle to achieving my goals. There is never a perfect time and perfect circumstances to make a change. It really comes down to deciding what you want and taking courageous action with faith that things will fall into place.
So why wait until January 1st to make changes? I am finally healthy, and although I am still hurting over the loss of my cat, I’m doing better. So I started today. Yes, it would have been easier to wait until after the holidays to get back on track with dieting and working out. I don’t want easy. If you only do something when it’s convenient, you will never do it with any consistency. I started today because I am so excited about the things I want to accomplish next year that I didn’t want to wait another day to get to work!
Among some of my 2012 goals:
- Win my class at the Natural Michigan Nicole Wilkins Fitness and Figure (July 14th)
- Place top 5 in a local AZ figure show (either AZ Open on July 21st or Western Regional in November)
- Complete a sprint distance triathlon
- Run at least 4 races (5K or longer)
- Try a CrossFit gym
- Go to a yoga class
I also created a collage of motivating images that I put on my bathroom wall:
I chose to put them in my bathroom because it is the place I will see them the most. Every time I get ready, whether it’s for work or the gym or a night out, I will be face to face with what I want to be.
I’ll admit I do have some OCD tendencies and like to start things at the beginning of a week or beginning of month, etc., but there is no reason to wait until January 1st to start working toward your goals and chasing the life of your dreams. At the very least, you can begin tiptoeing there. Take your dog for an extra walk/run. Pass on the holiday cookies in the office. Cut back on the soda that you drink every day. Spend an extra 5 minutes on the treadmill. You don’t have to start on your new path at a sprint. Every step in the right direction counts, no matter how small.
And here’s a new year’s hint and something that was key in enabling me to work full time, go to graduate school, and prep for a competition simultaneously – TV is a HUGE timewaster. I do still watch a lot of TV, but when I get busy, my goals always come first and TV is the first thing to go. What are you really getting out of watching that same rerun of The Office for the 13th time? Is Jersey Shore really enriching your life? They make DVR for a reason. Pick your die-hard favorite shows and let your DVR do its job. Skipping the gym to watch TV is never justified. Watch your shows AFTER you’ve done your homework/worked out/gone for a run/whatever it is you need to do for your goal. If you can make time to watch TV or go on Facebook, you have more than enough time to do at least a 30 minute workout or spend 30 minutes on your goal. So get off of your butt and go!