August 1, 2014

Half-Year Resolutions

by pyrad
Categories: General Running and/or Fitness
Comments: 6 Comments

I made an ambitious set of New Year’s Resolutions in January. Some of them have gone really well, and some of them probably aren’t going to happen. As I mentioned in my last monthly review, I’m due to update this list.

And there’s no reason that January 1 is the only time people can set resolutions! August 1 seems just as arbitrarily appropriate!

I wanted to make all of these resolutions SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-Sensitive) but some are difficult to measure in any specific way.





I will run the Goodlife Fitness Toronto Marathon on May 3, 2015 in less than 4:34:44.

GFTMlogoI want to beat my current personal best of 4:34:44. I haven’t run a full-marathon competitively since the fall of 2012, so it’s quite a ramp to get back up to that distance.

This will be a huge challenge. It’s probably one of the reasons why I’m setting this resolution 9 months before the race.

It looks like I’m going back on my word. I had said I wasn’t going to do another full-marathon until I did a Sub 1:28 half-marathon. But the Jack Daniels training has felt really good. I will probably buy a 24-week custom training plan in November and follow it religiously.

OMG... what have I done...
OMG… what have I done…

I registered yesterday… it’s on!



I complete my first Triathlon on June 1, 2015 in Milton

I’ve been loudly musing about this for a long time. It’s going to happen! There’s a lot that has to happen in the next 10 months to make this happen, so now is a good time to start planning.

I’d like to say I’ll do the “Sprint Triathlon” but the more realistic goal is to do the “Tri-A-Tri” distance.

Now I need knowledge and gear:

Can anyone recommend a good book or other resources about triathlons?


I have a really old steel-frame bike my dad used to use. It hasn’t been used in over 10 years. But, I imagine if I get it tuned upheavily overhauled at a bike shop it will be road-worthy for an amateur like me. 

Can anyone recommend a reputable shop in Mississauga I should use?


The training will start soon and continue over the winter. I plan to start hitting the pool soon, but need a plan on what I should be doing to train. Any recommendations?



I will play at least 6 different songs on the guitar by April 2015. 

Music was a big part of my life growing up. I used to play piano, flute, alto saxophone, and sing. That kind of got away from me. Most of my sheet music was destroyed in the flood last summer, and I haven’t gotten around to replacing it.

During my vacation at the beginning of July, I went camping and there was a time where we were singing around the campfire. I really enjoyed ‘making music’ like that. I want to be able to do that anytime, and the guitar seems a reasonable, portable vessel for that.

I have a guitar I got at Wal-Mart a couple years ago. I played it a little but it’s collecting dust now. I’m going to dust it off, find some chord charts, and start learning. If I am for three 15-30 minute practices a week, I should have some fun.

I could also get fancy and buy Rocksmith which is a video games that teaches you how to play guitar.

The 6 different songs by April 2015 was to try to make the goal measurable and time-sensitive.



I will be conversational in the Tagalog language by March 2015. 

My family is planning to go to the Philippines next year, and it’s probably time for me to be able to have reasonable conversations in my family’s native language.

I took a course years ago but didn’t learn very much. There are limited resources to learn Tagalog because it isn’t considered a business language. I’ll need to come up with some sort of training plan.

I don’t know how to make learning a language measurable. With French, there was the DELF test which was definite and measurable.




I will earn at least 10 PMP PDU’s by the end of 2014. 

I was very proud when I passed my PMP test in February and received my Project Management Professional certification. To keep the certification I’ll need to get 60 Professional Development Units (PDUs) within 3 years of receiving the certification. Some are easy enough to get by watching webinars and such. But, I’ve gotta get started somehow!







I will run a half-marathon in the fall of 2014 in less than 2:03:22

I am going to put a full race effort into the Ottawa Army Run on September 21, 2014. If that doesn’t pan out, I have a second opportunity on November 13, in Las Vegas. It will be a challenge, but I have time to train and make it happen!



As I said in the New Year’s post, Peter Broadley inspired me to start tracking my sleep with the goal of getting 8 hours a night.

On my monthly reviews I have been tracking my hours of sleep. I haven’t had a month where the average was over 8 hours, but I’m getting closer. I can definitely see and feel the benefits. Tracking it keeps in in my mind and motivates me to get to bed, especially since I need to wake up early sometimes for #5amRunClub.



I will reduce my body fat to 34 pounds by the end of 2014.

At the beginning of 2014, I measured my weight as 205.8 pounds and 26.6% body fat. That means my body had about 54 pounds of fat. If I reduced to 34 pounds of fat, my new body fat % would be about 18%. I’d be very happy with that!

I’m over half-way through the year and haven’t really put a dent in the body fat % number. I’d like to think I look and feel better, but the scale doesn’t agree. Perhaps this will come with the focused training and sleep.



I will do at least 200 workouts in 2014 as tracked by my dailymile records.

Inspired by Andrea’s post here, I’ve been tracking the number of workouts I do in my monthly reviews too. It’s one more motivation go get up and do something. I’m during surprisingly well in this metric and expect to succeed this year!



Learn, memorize, and be able to perform an entire Tai Chi form sequence by August 2015.


I’m quite enjoying learning Tai Chi. It’s an exercise in breathing, flexibility, balance, focus and biomechanics. I find it’s a good, supportive ‘cross-training’ exercise for my running routine.

I finished the Tai Chi basics class at Ji Hong Tai Chi in Mississauga last week. I’m ready to move onto learning either Chen or Yang style. Yang-style is much wider known, and it the style that most people know, but seems a little ‘easier’. Chen style is the original and much more martial-arts like. Chen-style will take 3 semesters to learn, while Yang will only take 2. Either way, it will be the end of next summer by the time I’ve learned the whole form.


Happy 2014 and a half!


Comments closed


  1. Andrea says:

    Ohhhh, a link to my poor sad little blog. I might get back to it eventually.

    Anyways, good on you for signing up already for a 2015 race! Goodlife should be fun and you’ll get a GIANT MEDAL!

    • Thanks Andrea! I’m really looking forward to the giant medal! It’s a local trophy that is missing from my collection. I’m almost looking forward to falling over when they put it on my neck, lol!

  2. Emma says:

    Hey Paul! Great resolutions!

    One comment on this:

    I have a really old steel-frame bike my dad used to use. It hasn’t been used in over 10 years. But, I imagine if I get it tuned upheavily overhauled at a bike shop it will be road-worthy for an amateur like me.

    There’s a good chance it won’t be worth the money to do anything other than a tune up on an old bike at a bike shop. Parts/labour get expensive enough quickly that you might better off getting an entry level new bike. This is especially true if the old bike was originally from somewhere like Canadian Tire – some bike shops won’t even touch department store bikes, or charge more for tuning them up/fixing them because the quality can be very low and they are hard to work with.

    That said, my bike shop guy says that bikes that have been sitting untouched for a long time are generally in way better shape than their owners think they are, because it’s riding the bike that causes it to need fixing. Sitting in a garage, it may be perfectly fine with a little adjustment, cleaning, and oiling.

    • Hi Emma!

      Thank you very much for the comment. You make a very good point: I wonder if it would cost less to get a new bike rather than tuning up old rusty…

  3. […] I noted in my Half-Year Resolutions, I need to get 60 PDU’s within 3 years of passing the test. I’ve gotten about 5 hours […]

  4. […] week now until the Goodlife Fitness Toronto Marathon. I was greatly apprehensive when I registered last July, but I’m feeling pretty good about it […]