As fall nears, the days are getting shorter and the weather will soon be turning cooler and wetter. In these times, it’s important to embrace the right mindset so that we may sustain our fitness, or even improve our fitness, over the next eight months. Annually, I like to think of the fall and winter months as the most opportune time to get into the best shape of my life. Okay, being in my mid-40’s, perhaps that’s not realistic, but at least I can set the goal to become the fittest I’ve ever been in my racing age group of 40-44 – although I will be 45 in December.
Setting long-term goals and having a vision of the end result is paramount when in pursuit of things that truly matter. Whether your goals are centered around your career, your educational, your running, or something else, visualizing to level of intensity that you can emotionally and mentally feel the results before they happen is a key step in successful goal attainment.
As I begin the eight-month trek, I imagine myself venturing into a dark cave of majestic wonder and optimism centered around the vision I have for the goals I’ve set. The time in this cave is somewhat familiar – it’s a place I venture into each fall, only to come out the following spring in better or worse shape than the previous year. The end result is merely a byproduct of the work that was done in the cave.
What’s most important to know prior to heading into this cave is two things – your goal(s) and your level of commitment. You know right now, at this very moment, whether or not you will incessantly pursue your goals, baring something unforeseen of course. Perhaps from past experiences, you have set goals to do great things, only to then place those goals in a box, high up on a shelf, which you will reach for at a later time. So how much later? At what point will you say, “Enough is enough!” and begin to truly work on yourself and your goals? This cave is one you will wake up in every day for the next eight months, and the outcome will be entirely up to you and the level of devotion you put forth.
Step 1: Set a goal and see it like its right there in front of you!
Visualize your goals to the point that if they were right there in front of you, they’d slap you in the face! Create your own cave by setting a long-term, eight-month goal, so when spring arrives you can accomplish something once unfathomable. Set daily goals to ensure you get your ass up and out of bed, so that when the day is done and everything else has gone to shit, at least you’ve accomplished your goal of the day that, in the end, will be worth the investment.
Admittedly, I stole that last line from a colleague of mine who when I asked if she exercises in the morning or afternoon, she said morning – that was her reason why.
The truth is the truth. Set your goals and for the next eight months, live vicariously through yourself and get things done that will advance you every day in the direction of the successful attainment of your goal.
Enjoy the process!