Happy New Year. Hopefully you’ve had the opportunity to reflect a bit on 2017, to tally the score, to reconcile the ups and downs of the year. It’s totally arbitrary – there is no reason that we need to use 365 days as a scoreboard or period of consideration or as a new opportunity. We are back around the sun again I guess, and it’s snowing again, so it ‘feels like that time of year’. But it’s arbitrary. There is no reason why we can’t start anew, leave behind, make anything happen starting on any day, any time, any where. But the New Year is so emphasized that it does create an especially potent opportunity for change and to use as a benchmark.
Below is some of what I’m doing, some goals and principals for 2018. I hope that you have some, too. If you don’t have any yet, pay attention to your thoughts and words over the next few days – you might find yourself saying “Boy that sure is interesting, I’ve always been curious about that,” or “That’s a great thing, I wish that was part of my life”, or “Wow, that’s great, good for you” or “Wow, that’s dumb, you’re an idiot”. These are all opportunities to identify things that you want to learn about, habits you’d like to develop, activities you’d like to participate in, behaviors you’d like to avoid and eliminate. Pay attention. Make a few of them happen, starting today.
Here are a few of the thoughts for myself:
-Post more to social media. It doesn’t have to be great, it doesn’t have to please everybody, it doesn’t have to impress anybody. I appreciate seeing the ordinary and extraordinary of my friends’ lives. I know that some people appreciate seeing mine. Self-consciousness and self-judgement, fear of judgement, trying to look cool or impressive, being or appearing egocentric or narcissistic – whatever, doesn’t matter. Just share your enthusiasm for life.
-Draw more. While traveling this year, I saw a girl making a sketch during a quiet few minutes. We all have time spent waiting – fill it with creating something. What a great thing – draw.
-Use the slow cooker. Beans, broths, soups. White beans, lima beans, black beans. Chicken broth, beef broth, chicken soup, lentil dal, split pea soup. Easy. Think ahead a few hours – chances are, you’re going to be hungry tomorrow, so go ahead and prep today so it’s ready tomorrow.
-Accept yourself. Particularly, accept yourself as an elite endurance athlete. It is a gift. It’s not a front, it’s not fraud, it’s not a lucky shot. It’s authentic and it’s who you are – everyone can see it but you. Accept the speed, the endurance, the mental strength, the body, the need to eat and sleep and take care of yourself. Go for the massage, eat the food, get to bed. These are required parts of the gift. You are living the dream, bringing one of your gifts into greater existence and sharing it with the world – fully accept it and live it 100%.
-Go on some more dates. It’s good fun.
-Go on a long hike. 1 week at least. 2 weeks would be a memory for your life.
-Do the Lake Mills Triathlon with as many friends and family as can be persuaded.
-Cook Italian food. Become accomplished (or at least adept) in the cuisine. It’s good for you as an endurance athlete – you have no inflammatory reaction to gluten, you could use more calories - so go for it.
-Experiment with a blood glucose monitor. It will be fascinating to see your blood glucose/insulin responses to exercise, fasting, eating this or that.
-Track your resting heart rate and blood oxygen saturation. Everyday, when you wake up, slip the pulse-ox monitor on and record the data. Easy, and it will probably be quite diagnostic.
-Eat limes. Limes are great. They’re probably good for you. Squeeze em for cocktails, salad dressing, marinade, tacos or straight up shots.
If you would, I would love to hear your thoughts on what you’re doing or focusing on differently than previously in your life. Funny, serious, petty, profound – share, please!
I have another post brewing in my head. It’s related to this one. It’s going to be about doing the small things, the first steps to making something monumental happen. I’m trying to bring into existence grand things this year, one goal in particular is on my mind, and I’d like to share how I’m achieving it today by doing nothing spectacular, but doing the non-spectacular consistently, with intention, and doing it until it grows into the ironically-common ‘overnight success 10 years in the making’.