As another year is winding down, a lot of runners are starting to make plans for the future.
And if you’re anything like me, you’re planning on some pretty big goals for the new year!
I’m a big fan of setting some epic running goals.
The problem with epic goals is that they usually take a while to be reached.
And by a while, I don’t mean weeks. I mean many months, and sometimes (oftentimes?) many years.
For a lot of people, and runners are no exception, staying on track for months/years is quite difficult.
But it’s not impossible.
So if you have your sights set on doing some big things next year (and beyond), here are some suggestions to help you stay on track and (eventually) hit it out of the park.
Tips for Achieving Your Big Running Goals
To be clear, you don’t need to try and adopt all of these suggestions in the pursuit of your goals.
Sure, they all work. But they may not all work for you or your particular goals.
And that’s ok.
If one or a few work better for you than some others, that’s fine!
Implement the suggestions you like most and get to work!
I don’t have any hard statistics on this, but my hunch is that most people fail to reach their goals because they forget what said goals even are!
This may sound ridiculous, but it’s true!
Regularly reminding yourself of not only what your goals are but why you want to achieve them is important if you’re serious about actually achieving them!
- Write them down on sticky notes and put the stickies everywhere.
- Use an erasable marker and write them on our mirror.
- Set them as the screen saver on your phone.
If you forget about your goals, you’re not going to be successful in reaching them.
It’s really that simple.
Chunk It Down
If you have big goals, you aren’t going to achieve them in one day or one week or even one month.
Shoot, there are many goals you won’t even be able to achieve in one year or possibly even one decade!
So when you set your mind to something big, one of the most important things you can do is break that goal down into some chunks that are manageable.
Because when we are working toward a big goal, it can feel like we aren’t making any progress on a day to day or week to week basis.
Having smaller goals helps us gauge our progress.
As we continue to check off those smaller goals, the momentum builds and instead of giving up on our big goals we are able to see how much progress we’ve made so far which helps us keep pressing forward toward our bigger ambitions.
When it comes to chunking your goals down, don’t just do so willy nilly.
As much as you can, try to create smaller goals that are in alignment with your big goal.
Because if you’re not careful, you can lose the connection between your smaller goals and your overarching goal.
Prioritize and Execute
If you don’t make your goals a priority, they won’t get done.
Of course, just because you make your goals a priority doesn’t mean that you will reach them.
But if they aren’t a priority, you have zero chance.
Make your goals a priority, and take action.
Ideally, you’ll be able to do something toward your goal on a daily basis. I mean, it is a priority, right?
But even if you can’t work on your goals daily, as long as your goals are truly a priority you’ll be chipping away at them consistantly.
And that is the key.
Track the Inputs
This might be the most overlooked, and also the most important, component of successfully reaching your big goals.
Too often, we focus on the end result.
Our pace. Our finishing time. Total mileage.
And for good reason, because most of our goals are related to achieving some end result.
But end results aren’t entirely in your control.
You know what is within your control? The inputs.
Whatever your goals happen to be, try to determine an input that you can track.
And then track it.
Invite External Accountability
There is power in telling other people your goals.
So if a little public accountability is something that will motivate you to stay on track, do it!
Post it on your FB wall. Tell your co-workers. Share your goals with your running crew.
The point is, the more people you tell the more people will (hopefully) check in on your progress.
And if you’re anything like me, the idea of admitting that you’ve given up on a goal isn’t very appealing.
Don’t have anyone to share your goals with?
We have a FB group for that.
(There will be a new post after the New Year dedicated exclusively to posting/sharing your big goals!)
One Last Word About Big Goals…
When it comes to setting big goals for yourself, please don’t worry about comparing the “size” of your goals to the size of anyone else’s goals.
If you feel like your goals are big, then your goals are big.
What Big Running Goals are You Working Toward?
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