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Abandon a Goal? Yes!

One of my favorite books that love to read, especially when I am in need of motivation, is called Thinking Body, Dancing Mind It is about reaching extraordinary performance in all areas of your life, but I especially enjoy it because the authors share their messages through examples of sports and athletes. One of the chapters that I recently looked back at was about goal setting, because this time of the year really has me analyzing my goals, as I am sure it does for many others. The book shared this quote:

“Within the Self, there is a central force of character that unifies thoughts and actions. When you are not in accord with your goals, you may feel indecision, conflict, or malaise; when you are, a sense of self-confidence and well-being will surround you.”
-I Ching no. 45

I couldn’t agree with this more, especially since I recently decided to abandon my goal of completing a triathlon this spring. I set this goal with a family member last September. Since then, we have been swimming, running, and cycling. This was especially hard for me since I barely knew how to swim at the time and the most i had ever biked was 10 miles! My goal was to be able to complete the swimming portion of a quarter mile in 10 minutes or less, and the last time I swam I had gotten as fast as 1:15 a lap. I could do about six in a row, and I needed to do 8…almost there.

But sometime mid December, I just didn’t feel like going anymore. I thought maybe because I was training and dieting for a bikini show earlier December, that I was just tired. I told myself I’d get back on track as soon as it was over. Well the show came and went, and two weeks passed. Then I said I didn’t want to swim because I felt fat and out of shape, and didn’t want to put on my suit! So I thought to myself, if I’m not going to swim then at least I will bike!….but I never did. When I went to the gym, I would say to myself, “I feel like running, I will run” or “I will bike when I get one outside, because cycling inside is so boring to me!” But that was all excuses! And I knew it…

Why was I making these excuses though? I wanted to do a triathlon and I wanted to do one with my sister! Frustrated with myself, I set out to plan my workouts just so I could have something to follow day by day, no excuses! I wrote it out on my iPad on the way to my New Year’s holiday vacation. I knew that when I got back from my vacation, it’d be business! Crazy, hardcore training! No excuses!

Well, during my vacation, in freezing cold NYC, I completed the longest run that I had done in a while. With gloves, headband, two pair of socks, and tons of layers, I don’t remember complaining at all during the run. It was a hard, exhausting run of course, but it felt natural and fun for me. Thinking back now, I remember asking my friend that week like almost everyday, “When are we going running?” or “let’s go running! Let’s go running!” Also, I didn’t pack my suit for swimming or shorts for biking, I packed my sneakers and outdoor gear for running! That should have told me something.

Well it did, I know the reason that I made all those excuses was not because I was tired, lazy, or lacked motivation, it is because it was the wrong goal for me! So I changed my goal. I changed it that week on vacation actually, when I got an email saying that I had been accepted into the NYC half-marathon lottery for March 2012! I was so excited and still am, I even scream yahoo! Now, my new goal is to do the NYC half-marathon in 97 minutes. That time gives me a guaranteed entry into the NYC full marathon, something that I have wanted to do for a while! You know you have the right goal when you go to bed thinking about how excited you are to get up the next day and make it a great run! There is no indecision or conflict, just self-confidence and well-being! You enjoy the journey of reaching the goal, because it is after all, all about the journey, not the destination!



One response

  1. Thanks for the comment. I think it is like evolution, we have adapted to breathing through our mouth to draw in more air into our longs to supply oxygen to our blood to provide us the ability to perform… It’s like running barefoot, it isn’t natural… I am a mouth breather too although I have been attempting to try and breathe more through my nose.


    January 17, 2012 at 11:23 am

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