Jul 23, 2013

having a plan

one of the most important keys to sticking with anything

is to have a plan

whether you have fitness related goals, money saving goals, or simply get the laundry done tonight goals

you have to have an action plan in place

for me, everything always sounds great in my head.

wake up @ 5, workout

i'll eat healthy all day

and i'll come home and walk the dog.

however, if i don't set quantifiable, measurable goals

that plan in my head turns into

sleep in until 5:30, watch the morning news and do a few bicep curls

eat fruit and nuts for breakfast and then treat myself to ice cream in the evening - you know, for "following through"

and walking woodford just until he does his business before calling it a night

as they say - the best laid plan of mice and men often go astray

the best way i've found to get around this is to write that ish down!

being able to physically "check" something off gives me a great sense of pride and accomplishment

and maybe i'm just wired differently, but i can't consider myself a success if all items on my "plan" aren't checked off

with half marathon training starting in less than 2 weeks - and bill and i using 2 slightly different schedules - i knew i needed something more than just an understanding between the two of us that we're getting up and running in the mornings

we would be running into the issue of who would be responsible for woodford on which day (bless his heart, he cannot stand to see us leave him at home when we run and refuses to keep quiet about it)

and what is the other person doing on "rest" days - so there's no slacking!

woodford shouldn't be running more than 3 miles right now in the heat/humidity

and we each have a medium-long run during the week which is 3+ miles.

in the past we never made a clear delineation of responsibilities and someone either took rest day too liberally (it says rest day...but that means from running!  cross train or strength training is still important!) or someone was reluctant to run with woodford since it was their faster/longer run day

and you know what happened - we burnt out.  we non verbally decided it was easier to just give in to the problems instead of finding a solution and our training suffered and became non-existent

and i blame that on not having a plan - not setting who is responsible on which day

until now!

i took to my favorite half marathon training tradition

and busted out a simple calendar template in excel

i believe you can click on this and make it more easily readable

the above is a snapshot of july - i couldn't resist the urge to be able to start crossing off days right away :)

my schedule is in pink and bill's blue.

if we take a look at august

you can see how our schedules are much different

bill is following hal higdon's intermediate plan which focuses more on speed work

while i'm just trying to survive :)

and i've also added shaded fields which indicate who will be walking/running woodford that day

that way - when bill is working on speed work he's not having to fool with woodford

and during my mid week medium-long run i'm not confined to the neighborhood to run in circles (it's too dangerous to run woodford on the surrounding roads)

and since our long runs are on opposite weekend days - there's no worries.

i've mapped out the next 3 months to get us to race day

and i've made several copies.

because the other important thing to keeping a goal

is visibility.

i have one calendar pinned at my desk

and made several copies for home - one for the fridge, another for bill's office and probably one more to keep by my bed

seeing what i have to do the next morning, the next weekend, etc keeps me inspired

and encourages me to make smart decisions like drinking more water so my legs don't feel crampy, and going to bed early.

it's also inspiring to see those long runs on the calendar

i know i can't bust out 10 miles right now

but knowing by week 9 i will be setting out to do just that really makes me take these 3 milers seriously - knowing that i'm building a foundation.

and the biggest satisfaction of all

i seriously get some weird high from marking things off

i do it at work too..

ok, so maybe i'm just some weirdo who needs validation through crossing things off/out

but it works for me


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