For many, the new year is a time of change and a time to refocus after a long holiday season. Setting goals for the new year can be a great way to get ahead in your training for the 2020 race season. Whether you are getting back into a training plan, or you’ve never stopped, refocusing and starting the year off with a positive outlook can help get you headed in the right direction to start the year We want to share with you some of our top tips for setting your goals early in the year to get to your personal best.
Set SMART goals
SMART goals are a great device for creating goals that can deliver fantastic results. If you are unfamiliar with the acronym, SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound. This is especially useful at the beginning of a training plan and important for keeping you on track throughout the year. SMART goals also help you set your goals in such a way that they are reasonable for you. Setting SMART goals will help you set goals that are achievable, but also challenging. It is a perfect way to get the year started strong!
When you are getting back into the swing of things, it is easy to fall in and out of training. Consistency is going to be different for each person, but the best way to improve at something is to do it. There might be times where it is easy to make excuses for why you are unable to go for a run, but you can overcome that and get out there. Consistency can help build good habits that will help you in the long run. Overcoming the adversity of your own mind will make training easier and lead to better results.
Following a consistent plan and overcoming our own excuses are important, but with that said it is more important to listen to your body and avoid burnout. If you are unable to run or not having fun doing it, taking some time off can be a really great thing. It can make you feel more refreshed and even bring joy back into your runs. By burning out, you will likely start and restart over and over again and risk undesirable results or injury.
Mix it up
One great way to avoid burnout is to change it up. If you are here, you enjoy running to at least some degree, but there are so many other great workouts that can help keep things fresh and make your runs even more enjoyable. Whether it is lifting weights, spinning, cycling, yoga, or recreational activities like basketball or soccer, doing something different is good for the mind and the body.
Track your progress
Thanks to our smartwatches and phones, logging runs has never been easier. It is difficult to see the small gains that you are getting from each run. These devices, however, make it easy to see how our training looks over time. All of this data is great for making understanding how our training is progressing and which adjustments might need to be made in order to be ready for race day!
Recovery is an integral part of training. There are many different methods that are used and finding the best fit for you can not just make you feel better, it can be a major factor in injury prevention. Depending on what you are trying to get out of your recovery, options range from free to whatever you want to spend. Stretching, ice baths, and relaxation are a great free options for recovering after training. For those looking to take recovery even more seriously, there are options such as cryotherapy, sensory deprivation tanks, percussive massagers, and massages (we love Greene Massage Clinic). If these options fit into your budget, they are fantastic ways to help you feel at your best!
Of course this is not an exhaustive list and there are many other ways to stay on track for training this year. Ultimately, it comes down to what best fits you! Everyone has different regiments and thoughts on how to become a better runner. Whatever you like to do - do that!
Let us know what tips you have for getting to your personal best and go crush those 2020 goals!