The following quote I recently found in Kara Goucher’s book, Running for Women, and love it because I think everyone can relate to it. Whether you are looking for more time to workout, read, spend time with loved ones or just relax, it’s easy to default into the excuse of being tired.
All top international athletes wake up in the morning feeling tired and go to bed feeling very tired. – Brandon Foster
I personally take it to the next level and not only use the excuse of being too tired, but I also state that I simply don’t have enough time. Lies. I won’t wash the dishes for days because “I am too tired or too busy” but always make plenty of time for the latest episode (or three) of Shark Tank. Sound familiar? I thought it might.
That’s when I sat down with myself and reviewed my personal goals for the year. I soon realized that yes, I wouldn’t be running a fraction of what elite athletes run in a week, but I would need to kick it up a notch in order to make my goals a reality. And guess what, I could do it regardless of how tired I am.
My plan to succeed: plan ahead! It was easy choosing the races I wanted to run, but then I had to figure out how I was/am going to get to the starting lines. I searched, read, printed and then projected all of my workouts into one location: my daily planner. Many of you who have been following along for the past couple of years know I’m a little in love with the planner that ErinCondren.com offers. It works for me because there is both a monthly calendar and enough room each day to jot down blog post ideas, meal plans and grocery lists. Not only that, it’s super pretty and customizable.
Every running workout is listed on the full-month pages between now and the Turkey Trot 10k this November. Every day will be spent either running, cross training or resting; no guesswork. I did this because if I see a workout and skip it, I am more likely to feel unproductive for not working out than I would be if I didn’t have a plan outlined at all. It is a little overwhelming knowing that I have all of that work ahead of me, however, I focus on the next upcoming race and the pressure is lessened. I’ve also created a little highlighter trick to help visualize my progress. If I complete the workout as planned, I put a green check in that day’s box. If I complete a modified workout, I highlight the workout in green (but no check). If I completely skip the workout, I put a pink slash in the day’s box. By using this quick method of highlighting my hard work, I can easily glance at the month and know how much effort I’ve put forward. So far this month, I’ve only missed three workouts- one each week… and I’m pretty darn happy with that!
Planning ahead and physically writing down my workouts a month (or in my case, months) in advance seems super easy (and is!) and has been a great motivator for keeping me on track. Not only will this make me more prepared for my upcoming races, but I can already sense a habit forming. I look forward to my daily lunch break workouts and have even shared my plan with someone running the Boilermaker alongside me. Once I start to cross train more (i.e. spin and weight lift), I’ll start to add those workouts to my planner as well.
That’s it- plan ahead and tell someone your goals! Do you write down your workouts monthly or do you just wing it?