Everyone else seems to be listing goals for 2009. While I hate to tell mine to anyone for fear of actually being held accountable, whether I want to admit it or not, I have thought about some things I'd like to do this year.
But here's the caveat: these are not goals in the sense that I am committing to them. They are simply things that I wouldn't mind seeing happen and will likely put forth some effort to accomplish.
Years ago, I ran a marathon with a goal of finishing under four hours. For a guy who meets Elden's definition of a clydesdale (subtract 5 pounds from 200 for every inch you are below 6 feet), I thought this was a good time. I made the halfway split in 1:58 and knew I'd need to dig deep to make it. About mile 20, my quads started cramping. Eventually it got to the point where I could no longer run and had to walk until the cramps went away. I continued alternating, running until the cramps became unbearable and walking until they went away, for the last six miles and finished in 4:12.
I beat myself up about that time for months until finally I realized that it was a respectable time and the physical condition I was in when I got it was an achievement in and of itself. Since then I have hesitated to set hard and fast goals for results, knowing that external factors or just having a bad day can make more of a difference than preparation ever will. Not to mention, I have way more fun when I'm doing something first and foremost just to do it and only secondarily to see how well I do it.
With that in mind, here is a list of things I've thought of that if they happened in 2009, it would not suck:
- More ski days than the 2007-8 season. Last year was a personal best for me, with over 30 days on snow. I'd like to ski even more this year. And I'd like a lot of those days to be with my wife and kids.
- Finish Lotoja under 10 hours. I was tantalizingly close last time. My goal was 11 hours, and I blew it out of the water. Of course, conditions were good, but this time we could have another Snotoja. Or I could crash. Or my dad could ride it, and I decide to ride with him at his pace, because finishing a double century at 63 years of age kicks way more ass than finishing it under 10 in your 30's.
- Ride Leadville. I'll send in the lottery form and hope I make it. I'd like to do it on the single, but we'll see. Have to get in first. Definitely will not do it on the single unless I have a suspension fork--my wrist can't take it.
- Focus more on my career. Having spent a much larger chunk of last year than I'd like without work, I'd like not to see that happen again. I realize that downsizings are things that just happen and don't necessarily reflect on performance. But I can't get it out of my head that had I done things differently, I could have avoided that pain.
- Explore the Wasatch. Being back near a place I love so much, I am shocked at how little exploration I did before I left. I'd like to do more hiking, particularly with my wife and kids. As much as I love being on the bike or the skis, I love seeing my kids stain their clothes with trail dirt even more.