While I’ve mostly been absent from writing to the blog, and my fitness routine has only been slightly less absent than that, I have been able to maintain one thing completely dialed in over all this time: fitness tracking (as usual). With all of that data together I decided to create my first annual review post. I’d say compared to the average American I had a very normal year. Unfortunately I don’t want to have the fitness level and longevity of the average American, so while I’m not going to say things were bad they weren’t where I want them to be either.
After a year of false starts, many written about here ad nauseum, but with maintaining my tracking of nutrition and fitness goals every day, I can say that this time around I’ve started off on the right foot on dialing in my fitness/lifestyle goals and getting myself back on track.
Phase 1 of 2017’s Goal Accountability project was a disaster, as I chronicled here. Phase 1 ended weak, really non-existent adherence, which rolled into Phase 2 beginning equally weak; but I got my butt in gear one week in and finished it strong!
When I wrote about kicking off 2017 (link) with a new push for goal accountability I specifically stated that it wasn’t a new years resolution and that those don’t work for me anyway. If my performance in the first phase isn’t a pointed tail of that I don’t know what is. Continue reading 2017 Phase 1 Goal Accountability: A Dud
Yesterday I had a tongue in cheek conversation with a friend about our resolutions. He asked me what my resolutions were for this year. I stated: “To not exercise, eat continuously, and try to add thirty pounds of fat…I’m trying the reverse psychology thing.” Knowing my penchant for trying new things it isn’t totally ridiculous that he took me literally, but I quickly corrected that notion before I got a call from one of my family members asking what the hell I was thinking about. I used to do resolutions, but I don’t, that doesn’t mean that the roll over of the calendar isn’t a good occasion for me to double down on trying to dial it in.
October 16, 2016, when I got back from my honeymoon, I said I was going to be emphasizing a fitness focus by looking at using a goal accountability report card. Really this is getting the tempo for doing these things more into 2017 and beyond. Work and life took my eye off the ball but it didn’t stop me from actually keeping the report card. What’s the point of an accountability exercise if you only do it when you know you are going to score well? That’s like only going to the doctor when you are healthy. The sobering reality is that right now I’m failing on my five goals, but I didn’t need a report card to actually tell me that.
With a wedding and honeymoon now out of the way it’s time to get back to being serious about my fitness levels again. Yes, I was able to not go totally off the rails over the last few months but I had a bit of a fitness deficit to work out of to begin with. All of the excuses, legitimate or otherwise, are now gone. No, I’m not going to do an experiment. No, I’m not going to be targeting some specific weight loss, muscle increase, or performance goals. I’m instead taking the tools that I’ve applied to those sorts of expeditions and applying that to a more general concept.
Despite my bitching and moaning I actually really liked my first six week challenge. With that one now in the books it’s time to look into doing another one. It’s not going to look drastically different than the first, but some of the parameters are going to be refined.
Like a good New Year’s Resolution, the purpose of the challenge is to set a pre-defined short term objective that I can concentrate on and focus for making longer term changes.
People need goals to actually get somewhere. If you don’t have some idea of what your target is, how are you going to hit it? At the same time if all we do is jump from goal to goal, what we end up doing is burning out on goals and actually never achieving a point of contentment. We spend all this time trying to achieve some goal while the actual goal itself will at most be a fleeting moment. There is some irony in the fact that 99% of the time we are chronically not at our goal. In fact if we are setting ambitious goals it’s possible we will never achieve them. Does that make a person a failure because they didn’t achieve it? I think that depends on if they are looking for enjoyment at achieving a goal versus from going through the process of trying to get there.