So what are the lofty resolutions I have set up for myself this year? First off, they aren't so lofty. And secondly, they aren't exactly resolutions for the full year. Last year I discovered that making simple monthly self-improvement goals for myself was far easier to do than setting grand gestures for a whole year (like in 2008 where I set two rather vague goals that I'm pretty sure I forgot about by mid-February). For example, last February I decided to not eat meat for a month. In March I decided to cut soda from my diet. Both goals were met with relative ease - but not without temptation. In fact, I think the soda thing lasted through mid-May or June. The reason I took it up again? Huge case at work that had me working around the clock and I needed (err, wanted) the caffeine. But the goal wasn't to quit for good, it was just to prove to myself that when I want to, I can have self-discipline. In April I decided to attack my peanut M&Ms addiction and went cold turkey - no M&Ms for a month! Now, this may sound a bit ridiculous if you are unaware of the depth and breadth of my love of what I consider the perfect candy. Perhaps you have never known the beauty of freshly popped popcorn with peanut M&Ms sprinkled in while the popcorn is still hot enough to slightly melt the chocolate inside its candy shell. If not, I am guessing you have never sat on your couch watching a movie, craving a snack and been pulled almost against your will into the kitchen to pull out the bag that is almost omnipresent in the cookie jar by the sink . . . I guess that is just me. Well, I knew this little indulgance had grown into a crazy habit that was being fed more than once or twice a week. So I cut myself off! And now? I only indulge once every couple of weeks and I no longer have the bag of m&ms always at the ready. Small goal of complete abstension for a month led to success at the larger goal of cutting back. See, self, you can live without m&ms.
In April, I also decided it was time to set up a goal that was a bit longer term and decided to start running. And in June I ran my first 5k! The goal was not without its challenges but I did it and it felt really good.
Which brings me to my goals for 2010. I have two and they are basic and neither is actually for the whole year. So without further adieu, my goals:
- Run the Wasatch Back Ragnar Relay. I actually signed up for this clear back in October but I've been worried about it and mentally not entirely committed. I had doubts and fears that I soothed primarily by ignoring that I had signed up - especially when I was not running in December and January due to a mystery back issue. What is the Ragnar Relay you ask and what am I so afraid of it? It is a 188-mile team relay race from Logan, Utah to Park City, Utah wherein 12 team members alternate running 3 legs each for 24 hours. Awesome, right? My team captain is the same girl who stood next to me in gym class in 8th and 9th grade who could run circle after circle around the field where I painfully dragged my feet while clutching my side as I wondered what could possibly be trying to stab its way out. That 13-year old girl would finish near the front and cool down by running along side me to keep me company to the end as I finished barely ahead of the apathetic goth chick and the stoner girl who just finished her smoke break. I'm pretty sure Amanda will have to do the same thing for me at some point during my 12.4 miles of running. The race is in June just days before I turn 35. The training schedule started on February 1st and so far, so good. This morning I woke up tired and sore and embraced the idea of swapping Saturday's rest day with Wednesday's run and snoozed a little longer. But that does not mean I am failing at this goal or giving up three days in. I am maintaining flexibility - and avoiding thinking about how I will manage to run for 50 minutes at one time by the end of March, let alone for 120 minutes at the end of May! I am excited about this goal because my teammates include my sister, my oldest friend, her husband, her sister, her mom and a handful of other people that sound pretty cool. Oh, and you should know, yes, I am running the easiest leg of the whole thing, I am not that crazy.
- Stop complaining for a month. Easy, right? Considering that I have a pretty great life filled with good friends and family and a great job, one would think so but the dreary weather, the dreary economy and the dreary attitude of many of the people I am often around has me infected with an extra dose of negativity lately. So for the rest of February, no more complaining. No whining. No negative comments. I will practice the adage of "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." This starts today and since February is a short month and I will spend a week of it on a tropical vacation, this should not be hard. And yet, I think this will be very challenging nonetheless.
And those are my early 2010 resolutions. Maybe sometime in the next little while I will finally get around to telling you what I thought about 2009 and how I think it changed me . . . .
In the meantime, did you make resolutions for this year? If so, what are they? Are you still sticking with them? What keeps you motivated?