Achieving your goals

A few weeks ago many of us posted our goals for the next year or so.

What we didn't do was state how we expect to achieve them.

It never ceases to amaze me the number of people, from all walks of life, who keep on doing things the same way, day in day out and expect to get different and better results.

One of my favorite quotes is Freud's definition of insanity: "Doing the
same thing over and over again but expecting a different outcome."

So, what changes, if any, are you going to make to help you to achieve your goals?

You may have to do some serious thinking before you answer this one!


  • I've achieved one of my two goals this year.

    I'm sure the reason for my improved form was because I stepped up a training group on club nights. The 'B' group run too fast for the pace I was doing at the beginning of summer. I had a word with the guy who leads the B's and suggested that I join them for four weeks (8 sessions) during which I was bound to slow the group down. After four weeks the plan was to either stick with the Bs if I'd improved to the extent that I didn't slow them down or return to the Cs if not. To cut a long story short I did improve, am now comfortable with B group training pace and have been rewarded with PBs at 5K, 10K, 10M and half marathon
  • I'm still achieving minor gains (PBs' in the last half, 10m and 10k) so am not at the point of having to change things yet. I find it difficult with family commitments to spend much more time so it would be fine tuning, ie alternative exercise, diet etc and to be honest I'm not that motivated at this moment in time.

    Also just to disagree with your analogy, the same things may start off the same each day but it only takes a flag of a butterflys wings to turn out completely different.

    On a slightly differnt tack are you sorted for Windsor accomodation. Also as a valued, respected member of these forums could I have you view on the URWFRC kit thread to convince me that I'm not completly wasting my time
  • Have only just picked up running again after several months injury/idleness.

    That's my main change.

    Also hoping to join a club (so that laziness doesn't rob me of another year running), so there's another.

    PS - please tell me I'm wrong and it really is Friday today.
  • to acheive my goals pretty much all i have to do is keep going - keep running and keep watching what i eat - and i'll acheive them. easy really when you think about it but much more difficult in practice!
  • I wrote that my goal was to keep running three times a week over the winter. The way I plan to achieve this is by running during daylight! I currently run in the early evening, but this will get switched to late morning once the days are shorter. Also, if I can find a half marathon that suits me, the need to train will certainly keep me going.
  • I want to break my PBs for 10 miles and 1/2M this coming year. I've started doing more training on my own as the guys in the squad don't seem to have a coherent training schedule that fits in with mine.
    Next try at a PB will be at Waterbeach 1/2m on 20th Oct.
  • The GNR marks the end of the season for me and I’ll take it easy for a couple of weeks before starting on a more structured training programme aimed at producing 2 peeks per year (early Spring & late Summer)

    The program will be based on BASE, BUILD, PEEK, RACE, and RECOVER

    My plan has been tailored to allow me to combine Marathon training along with Olympic / Middle distance TRI training and I intend concentrating on road races of 10-mile or more and approximately 6 TRIs next year – although I will not be totally ignoring 10k and hard speed sessions.

    On top of this I intend incorporating 2 x gym sessions to help improve strength and core stability

    And this is how I aim to achieve my goals


    I like it when Fridays come early
  • Drew

    I think I'm still at the level where the main thing that is changing is my attitude towards running. I'm gradually becoming both more serious and more sensible, at the same time.

    I'm trying to follow Zatopek: "one can only increase the effort step by step, and you must always keep within the bounds of what is possible".

    It's OK to dream the impossible dream, but you won't get nowhere without a realistic plan of action!

  • my changes are very simple really because I am only a beginner

    - simply to get out there and get going with the run/walks so that I can eventually run for half an hour without stopping

    - to lose weight by eating healthily ( ie leaving out the chocolate, crisps etc) and getting out and exercising at least 3 times a week

    - to find somewhere where I feel safe running early morning/evening during winter (hate gyms and treadmills!)

    - to try not to let the fact that I am a tubby person who wobbles rather when she runs, stop me from getting out and running!

    By doing all these things I hope to complete a 5k in Dec/Jan, a 10K late spring and the Windsor half next Sep!
  • I know I can be a much better runner, and a much fitter person, by making my training more consistent, all year round.

    I've already made some changes to my life which will make this possible - a new job means an hour a day less travelling and I have reduced out-of-work committments too.

    PBs all next year!
  • I wouldn't say I have definitive specific plans, life in general doesn't work like that (work keeps getting in the way!). However, the following is a general guide as to how I think I will keep moving towards my goal.

    1. Immediate post marathon plan is to rest and cure recurrent knee problem - I currently have it under control but need a full solution.
    2. CUT my mileage. Last few weeks have been nudging 50 per week. I will not train for another marathon in the short term so will cut my mileage to 35-40 over the winter with a max long run of 90 minutes, but will up the focus on speed.
    3. I know from my last experience with running that real improvements can be expected for 2-3 years just by more of the same so consistency is a key aspect. With this comes weight loss - already since starting running again in January I've lost about 7 kilo's (no change in diet) and think I will lose probably another 3-4 over the next year.
    4. Buy a new treadmill. I currently have a treadmill but with a maximum speed of 16 kmh. For the winter I want want with a max of 18-20 kmh so I can build speed over the winter. MrsH has been advised!
    5. In the spring. Join a club - I've identified the most likely club and now just need to find the time to get along to my first session.
    6. Build strength. Part of my running next year will be hill running (of the uphill variety), initially I'll be working towards a 10k in early spring (600 metre climb) but may decide to run a more serious hill race in the summer.

    Oh yes, spend less time on the forums and more time training!
  • Hi Martin,
    Are you going to try to reach a particular standard before you join your local club?
    Do you feel that you should be running at a pace that would allow you to,as it were,'fit in'?
    I am interested from my own point of view as I am also considering taking this step.
  • Danny

    I identified the club from looking round my area and at the results from a local race - in a recent half marathon (in which I came in 66 place {out of 500}) - they had 10 runners in the top 50 but also a number behind me. I'm looking to join a club which will push me.

    Having said that I would always ring a club beforehand to find out what standard the groups are and how far they run on a typical club night. Most clubs will have a range of experiences.

    I was in a club before I left the UK (I now live in Germany) and trust me if you want to improve your running its the best thing you can do!

    Good luck
  • Martin

    I agree with what you are saying.I think that club training should bring a more competitive element to my training,thus bringing about improvement(hopefully).

    This may also allow me to set realistic targets over the medium to long term.

    However,how would you respond if you find the club's/coaching philosophy differs drastically from your own e.g emphasis on high milage rather than quality etc?
  • Hmmmm.

    Its an interesting one Danny and I'm not sure what the answer is - it largely depends on what you want to achieve with the club so I can only relate my personal experience - Other may have other stories so maybe you might even consider a new thread under training.

    Anyway, the main reason I joined a club (and will look to join again) is to do long tempo or race pace sessions as these are (I find) the hardest to do alone in training. For example, I never have any problems doing shorter intervals but with the club there was a group that would typically run 8-10 miles midweek at around 6:30 pace (my race pace in those days was around 6:00 min pace for 10k) I found these sessions fantastic for building speed stamina.

    I should add that there were similar groups doing this run and much shorter runs a lot slower so don't be scared off!

    You will find that there are many different types of club - some with a "jogging" background and some with a more formal athletics base and in your case I would aim to join a club that seems to offer the best balance (i.e. some people join because they want company in long runs) also most clubs will typically run two sessions, a mid week session based on interval/tempo running and usually Sunday for longer runs.

    I should also add that joining a club will also offer you chance to compete in local cross country races, summer league races and relay races.

    For what is essentially a lone sport however, adjusting to running with other can take a while so when you do go to a club give yourself a couple of weeks to settle in - I did this by fibbing about my pace initially so that I ran with a slower group!
  • I live Just outside Bath,
    Can anyone recommend a good running club that I could join?
  • MinksMinks ✭✭✭
    My goals for 2003 have been twofold: one, to build up to being able to comfortably and consistently run for a minimum of 20 miles per week and to build up from that, and secondly to enter more races.

    I'm currently running between 20 and 25 miles a week consistently, and so far this year I've entered 4 races - 5K, 2 x 10K and half marathon (as opposed to one race last year). I may even get a few more in before the end of the year.

    I recognise the fact that I'm still relatively new to running (only just over a year) and so far I've managed to avoid injury by not trying to do too much too soon. My next goal will be to hone my training so I get faster, and to run a marathon next year (hopefully FLM).

    The one thing that has really helped me in achieving this year's goals has been monitoring my training and progress by way of a running log - v. v. useful.

  • Number one goal for me is always to stay injury free. So far so good- being a tad on the lazy side I am more than happy to back off if I get a niggle.

    Have achieved five of my goals and failed on one (sub 3 at London) but I did get on the front line start photo so it was worth it!

    I have still to win a triathlon, do a sub 30 5 miles and a sub 18 5k and improve on last years race the train time.

    I need to find a triathlon with an incredibly small field and a couple of races of 5k and 5 miles that don't have a swim and a bike ride preceeding them and bobs your uncle! Race the train is not far off and I haven't been whacking any long runs in so will be relying on residual fitness and a bloody minded approach, we shall see.
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