When a window cannot be found - look for a door.
I won't bog you down with a review of my 2012, but I will give you some of the things I learned in hope that you are able to apply them to your life, training and racing endeavors.
1) Refine - distill your goals down to a few. I've always tried to do too much in order to meet coaches goals. Now I've picked out my goals and on the surface, they don't sound too competitive. That's fine. They are simple and they are all mine. What makes this easier on me is that the work to meet those goals is now clear. Do these things and I should be right there. Don't meet the work requirements of my goals - and just show up and enjoy the day. Simple. No pressure.
2) Be willing to change (quickly) - alter your strategy(ies) to meet your goals in the real world that we live in. Every day will be a challenge. That's ok. What can you control? What decisions can you make that make your strategy work? Workout insanely early? Brutally late? What can you change to make these things happen? Decide now - not later. Decide and move on with decisive action.
3) Have the guts to finish what you started - commit to complete the work required to meet your goals. One of the things I challenge people with all the time, "Don't like the situation? What are YOU willing to do to make it better? There are no victims here."
4) Does it have meaning to ME? Who gives a carp if someone else wants to do something. Does it mean anything to ME?
I posted on Facebook that I'm not racing a local (and hotly contested) 1/2 marathon or any 70.3/half ironman distance race in 2013. Why? Mainly because it doesn't mean anything toward my goals for 2013 which tie into my long term goals for 2014 and 2015. I'm doing the events that I want to do this year with no bucket lists or "must do" pressure.
First, I planned my life.
Second, I planned my goals.
Third, I planned to do some events that I think I have enough time to train for properly.
We lost my dad in 2012. While I miss dad, the thing that I remember most is that he would be very upset if I didn't move on mentally. He will always be in my heart and mind. Dad is part of me. One of the conversations that we had wasn't about achieving or doing this or that. It was about finding what I wanted to do and pursuing it in an all out effort. I think I'm there.
2012 was very tough. A lot of positives occured this year as well, so let's not minimize them in the sadness we experienced as a family. I choose to look at the positives (even if I don't understand why I was given this life experience) and look to the future. I will not forget where I came from as I honor the past and stride forward.
Lookin' back at the moments, black and white.
I wouldn't change a thing that changed my life. - Kenny Chesney
2013... let's go!