Friday, January 13, 2012

Looking Back & the Path Ahead

Life is best enjoyed absorbed in the moment.  Living in the moment is a state that comes naturally to some, some realize over time, and some sadly never come around to.  When our thoughts are consumed by the past or future our enjoyment of today is near impossible as well as effectively shaping and learning from the events that transpire.
It took bringing a true master of living in the moment, a dog, into my life and the deaths of friends to recognize how unbalanced my ways were and begin living for today. 
Thoughts of the past and the future require due consideration and balance with the present.  Achieving peak success in a complex world requires some reflection and planning.  The keys to future success lie in past accomplishments and failures.  The good and bad experiences of the past year shaped the ambitious schedule of events I plan to do this year and how I will go about making it happen.

2011 unfolded in ways I could have never foreseen.  Long term ambitions were repeatedly realized and replaced with even greater ambitions at a faster clip than I could ever imagine.  I mountain biked in Spain, ran my first half marathon, competed in my first triathlon, rediscovered trail running, and ran 26.2 miles.  Only partial credit for these accomplishments belongs to me.  My wife deserves most of the credit for her infectious ambition and drive.  Her influence showed me paths I would not have seen or taken otherwise.
The past year featured an unstructured life happens training plan.  286 hours marks a life time high with 119 running, 90 biking, 35 swimming, and 34 MMA/Strength hours.  Running was consistent the whole year, everything else was not, I hope to remedy this in 2012.  
Accomplishments are rare and are something to take pride in.  Accomplishments are the culmination of a long journey that is just as rewarding but also contains failures.  To achieve greatness it is important to take stock of these failures, learn, and move forward without letting the failure define us.

 2010 ended horribly for me.  In November I went to Spain for work and wrecked my ankle within the first few days.  A couple weeks later I got stomach worms.  I lost a ridiculous amount of weight and had a very tough mental time making it through the month.  It was a low point for me but laid the foundation for appreciating what I have and making the most of the future.  In January I ran my first half marathon and a year later this past December I cut 20 minutes off that time, mostly thanks to the intellectual pursuits and open mind that accompanied my training.
896 miles run in 2011 is up six fold from 145 in 2010 and marks a lifetime high.  Shaded portions indicate injury.  Every run was purposeful and a great return on investment was realized in terms of race times.  
All glory is fleeting and after accounting for success it is necessary to move forward.  There is much truth in that we are only as good as our last effort and where we are going is more important than where we have been.  Like our failures our accomplishments should not define us but the journey should by teaching us to appreciate, persevere, fight, laugh, and love - in other words live.
I don’t know everything 2012 holds but know if I go into it with my head on straight success will follow.  The goals I have this year are different than any I have had before.  I would like to make running a social experience and have already started by running with some friends, reaching out to other runners, and planning the Ragnar relay.  Every performance goal I can think of is achieved by purposeful balanced consistent training leaving me with a volume goal of 10 hours of training a week.  Rounding out my goals is living a balanced life with plenty of rest, recovery, and time for loved ones.  The idea is not only to succeed but to thrive and enjoy life with those around me.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, no doubt your running had a massive improvement over the year with that much improvement on the 1/2 marathon distance...well done, sir.