New Years, New Goals… No!
New Years resolutions… goals, targets, call them what you like, but it's something that really shouldn't be needed if you are serious about your training, racing or personal goals. Why?
To excel at something, be it work or training or racing or a relationship, you need to be working at it every day, every week, every month. It is something you keep chipping away at to truly learn what you are capable of, where you need to go with it, and to learn where you need to improve. It is not something you realise is lacking at the end of the year. If this is you then you get yourself back on track and just keep moving forwards with consistent, manageable work that builds you, pushes you, develops you in all areas.
You develop your training year round by building consistency in endurance, strength and power work and developing your aerobic, anaerobic and threshold energy systems. You develop these every week. How much of each… I have no idea. Thats why you hire a coach.
I train very simply, but I train almost every single day of the year. I am not training to race anything as yet so the sessions are not actual race specific training, but I am doing something meaningful in short sharp sessions that push my muscles and breathing to a level where I know it feels comfortable but challenges my fitness. I ride to and from work 5-6 days a week (20min minimum each way), extending when time allows for a true beneficial training effect to take place. I also run when I can every 2-3 days, again when life allows. Sure some days I don't train, but then family takes precedence and I build on this area with quality family time. Other days I have a little more time to 'train' so I ride a little longer before or after work, or add a run on top of the ride and manage 2 sessions a day. I do this without taking time away from family or work. After all training for fitness and health is a lifestyle choice and something I love and always will.
I am not an elite athlete anymore or professional earning from my sport so it should be fun and rewarding without always being about training for your fastest time. Fitness / activity is engrained into me from a very early age and I have never stopped riding, running, climbing, walking, swimming, backpacking, skiing, and quite simply moving!
You have to find a time balance that pleases everyone and your goals will fall into place provided your goals are not too lofty. Set small targets that maybe take a few days to hit, such as trying to find the time for 2 swims in the week around your 2 rides and 2 runs and work and family commitments. Do that for 2-3 weeks and see how it affects your work, family, fitness and health. If all is good, try another goal maybe 3 swims, 3 bikes and 3 runs in a week over 2-3 weeks and again keep assessing. Eventually you should find the sweet spot that seems to work and keep everyone happy, and ultimately your fitness keeps improving and staying fun year round!
So you see resolutions are for the people that haven't found their routine, or balance, or true pattern of training that sees meaningful, manageable, improving results. Get this right and January 1st becomes just another day in training… but an awesome one to celebrate with family and friends as you see in the new year!