Suggestions for the New Year
**Always follow public health measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19
Often, our New Year’s resolutions are food and drink related. Sometimes they involve self-improvement, better productivity or sleeping hours. Regularly they are harder than we thought and regularly they are broken. Because they’re not easy! Especially when they involve physical activity.
At the very least, acknowledge that resolutions are difficult to keep, focus on only one or two, and don’t be so hard on yourself. Habits take time to form and the small things we do to move in the right direction result in big future changes. There’s also something humbling about running in the New Year, especially in January. It’s cold, it’s slippery, and it’s the season when resolutions—and your mettle—are tested.
Here are some suggestions for great running resolutions to take up this New Year alongside several tips to get there. Stay strong and have fun and print out your goals! Stick them on your computer monitor or make them into a smartphone background. Keep your eyes on the prize!
Running Resolution #1: I will log all my running and training! Write it down! Commit to your running goals on paper and do so in a running journal. This is an example of many small things adding up to a big one: the kilometres you clock and the times you ran.
Looking back on all that data, you’ll see incremental improvement that can be quite motivating. If you go a step further and log your other training exercises, you can use this info to piece together what works best for you. This is also a very helpful way to get other resolutions done: the big ones. Because the trick to doing something big is to break it down into little tasks.
Running Resolution #2: I will run further! More writing, yes—but this is more about mapping out the terrain and strategizing your attack plan. Break down the long distance you want to run by slowly ramping up to it.
You can even plan out shorter but increasingly longer runs to lead you up to a big race! If you’re aiming to do 21.1K in September, aim to run a 16K in August, 12K in June, and maybe 8K in April. Understanding what your body is capable of will be very important as you plan these out.
Running Resolution #3: I will run faster! If you want to run 10K under 50 minutes, you certainly can! You got this. Plus: beating a Personal Best is a very motivating goal when you are aiming to improve your running in some way.
Get an app that tracks your speeds and pay attention to how far you can go at a new speed. Work to strengthen your muscles outside of running, but also schedule in time to recover and stretch. These are integral parts of intensive training.
Running Resolution #4: I resolve to sign up for a race, like the Canada Army Run!
Registration for the 2022 Canada Army Run opens spring of 2022 and signing up will be a great kick in the butt to run it. Tell yourself you’re going to race, tell your friends and family, and then tell the world. Nothing is more energizing than registering for a race with the knowledge that you have fans cheering you on.
Maybe, if you’re lucky, you’ll have haters on the sidelines who don’t believe you can do it. Oh, to prove them wrong! Spite is great motivator! (There are no bad reasons for running.)
Running Resolution #5: I will be a Running Buddy!
You’ll go further if someone is there to urge you on, to tell you can do it, to hold you up when you are limping. And to be this kind of running buddy for another person is very fulfilling—helpful for your running goals too! Connecting with a running will both keep you honest about your abilities and push you to surpass them.
Put out the call to the Canada Army Run community, join a running club, or just ask that neighbour you see getting out there every weekend. A running buddy will do you a world of good—and you’ll repay the favour to your partner. Good luck!
And, this can’t be stressed enough, don’t be so hard on yourself! Mistakes will be made, you’ll fall behind. Just learn from them and get right back out there!