As the New Year rolls in, you probably have a long list of resolutions you’ve committed to when it comes to your most beloved sport. I’m personally not big on resolutions, but on setting goals to achieve (What? My last public post on my New Year’s goals was way back in 2009?!). But, I do know many of you runners have it all jotted down already.
Here are 7 New Year’s resolutions that I hope you DON’T have on your list. If you do, use your Body Glide or Hammer Gel to erase it from the list. (Okay, not too sure if that’ll work, but you can try!)
(1) “I will join every race every weekend.” This will leave you A) bankrupt, B) injured, or C) both. Choose your races wisely. If your argument to letter A is that you have more than enough money at the bank to finance your weekly races, then plan the races that you’ll run at an easy pace and those that you’ll race, then call me so you can treat me for breakfast after those races.
(2) “I will lose 10 lbs in 1 month because of running.” It’s not impossible. In fact, running will easily burn off that extra weight for you and then some. But, as you very well know, losing weight too fast isn’t too good for your body. Worse, if you’re competitive like uhm some people here, then it will seriously affect your performance. Lose weight gradually and the proper way.
(3) “I’ll run a marathon this year just like my officemate.” Who is your officemate anyway? And what does he or she have to do with what should be one of the highlights of your entire running career? Never ever set your running goals based on someone else’s. Listen to your own body. Set your own dreams. There is no pressure to outwit, outdo or outrun another. Last I checked, you’re not a contestant on Survivor.
(4) “I’ll beat that B#@Tch!” Now, now, no need for cussing on this blog or on the road. They say golf is a gentleman’s sport. Can’t we try to make running for well-mannered and polite runners too? Treat each runner, road organizer, blogger, volunteer, marshall, etc with respect and kindness. I can’t understand how some people learn self-discipline and life values through running only to treat fellow runners like crap. As for beating that other runner in a race, go ahead and do it, but shake her hand after the race. (No, don’t put super glue on your palm!)
(5) “I will run every single day.” This is a common runners’ mistake. Running daily may work for some, but it is not recommended for everyone. It can cause injury especially for beginners. It can also lead to dry hair, regular tardiness at work, and increased spending for detergent to wash your running apparel. Allow your body to recover in between runs. Vary the intensity of your workouts for optimal training. If you want to train daily, then consider cross training.
(6) “I will stick to my training program come hell or high water.” Seriously? If high water comes in the form of Sendong, I would highly recommend you run for your life (no pun intended). Sometime during your training, life will get in the way (ex. you’ll get sick, your child gets sick, your husband gets sick, or you get sick of your husband…kidding!) so you must be flexible enough to adjust your program. Don’t fret about it. You’ll finish that half marathon, you’ll still have a chance of hitting your goal despite minor setbacks.
(7) “I will focus on running this year.” Focus is good; it’s great! And running can definitely color and enhance your life. That’s what it did (and still does) for me. But please have more to life than just running. Know your priorities. Leave some space for other activities, events, interests, and more importantly, people. Nourish your mind and soul with other non-running elements. There’s nothing worse than sitting down with a runner who can’t talk about anything else but the next race, his fastest time, or the best running shoe on the market. By loving running without letting it rule your life, you open yourself up to so many possibilities this 2012 and, yes, that still includes breaking your PR in that 21k!
Happy New Year, runners!