2016 – Let’s Do This!

Jen FerenceRinging in the new year allows me to be both reflect and anticipate.

As I reflect on 2015 I look back at the fitness goals that I set January 4, 2015 and published for you all to see:

In 2015 I will…

  • participate in a variety of activities to build strength, definition and endurance
  • appreciate my body for its strength and endurance, and for what it allows me to accomplish daily (this will require great control of my self-talk and Rob’s patience)
  • complete a second marathon & better my 2008 time of 3:59:11

I checked off those bullets, maybe not perfectly executed, but my husband always says ‘you don’t strive for perfection, but excellence’. I now believe that statement to be more realistic and how I want to live my life.

Let’s reflect…

  • I didn’t participate in all of the activities that I’d set out to do, particularly upping my yoga practice (if I am allowed to call it that when I only go once a month, if I’m lucky)
  • I appreciated my body the majority of the year (struggled when it wanted to revolt on me during my long marathon training runs and when I had to find a substitute runner for my second lap of of the Northface Endurance during the November Project summit and even though I made the “right decision” I felt mad, let down, guilty, and like a quitter the entire time afterwards.
  • I did complete my second marathon, learning so much during my training and yes, bettered my time from 2008, hitting 3:42: , just not quite the 3:40 that I’d very ambitiously set as my “if everything goes perfect” goal. (I had 3 goal times…the “if everything goes perfect” time, the “super pumped” time of 3:45, and the “I’d better beat my last time” of sub 3:59)

I guess this is all to say that I celebrate my accomplishments and at the same time know that there is always room for improvement and new goals to crush!

My main fitness goal last year was focussed on chasing a marathon time, this year it is about the reason I am going to be active (running in particular).

In 2016

  • I run for myself
  • I run for others

I run for myself – not because I have to, not for a time, not for a distance but for the joy of running…time and distance will be gifted byproducts of getting out in the fresh air, sometimes on my own, sometimes with my running friends, sometimes for a “race”. I love races, not because I am racing anyone else but because I love the atmosphere, the energy of a race. I love going with people and celebrating first time distances, PRs and the incredible accomplishments that are achieved. I look forward to running:

  • MEC Edmonton race series
  • a leg of Sinister 7
  • a leg or two of Grizzly Ultra
  • and I am sure there will be a few others sprinkled in there as well…

I run for others – this year I want to add another purpose to my running, where my training and fitness can be shared with others to help them accomplish their goals. I look forward to running with

  • Sean in the Very Long Run to End MS
  • the Tegler Youth in the Hope MIssion Kids in Action Run
  • half marathoners as a Pace Beaver at the Lululemon SeaWheeze half marathon in Vancouver
  • my November Project tribe every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning.

Committing to my goals in such a public way holds me accountable. By sharing them with my family, friends and fitness community I am less likely to skip a long run, hit the snooze button in the morning, or become overwhelmed by self-defeating self-talk. I draw strength, motivation and courage from the people I surround myself with. I lean on them for support, call on them when I need that extra push, and find inspiration from them as I watch them accomplish their goals.

Here’s to 2016…a year where I will continue to grow as a runner, where I add a new purpose to my running, and where I join others to encourage and support their running goals!

Let’s do this!


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