January 24, 2016

New Year’s Resolutions 2016

As New Year’s Resolution posts go, I’m VERY late. January’s almost over and I’m finally getting around to publishing this. But, better late than never! And, I better get this out before I have to write a January review!!

 

Typical New Year's Resolution Post-its
Typical New Year’s Resolution Post-its

Unlike last year, a lot of my resolutions this year are much more difficult to quantify. I don’t think I can make them all SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-Sensitive), but I’ll try.

 

SET NEW HALF-MARATHON PB

I want to beat my current half-marathon personal best of 2:03:22 which I set during the 2012 Chilly Half-Marathon. Since I’ve already done a full-marathon in 2016, I don’t feel compelled to do another in this calendar year. That means I can focus on half-marathon racing rather than just completing.

My first opportunity to set a new PB will be the Chilly Half-Marathon on March 6 but I feel I’ll be even more successful at the Mississauga Half-Marathon on May 1.

 

CONTINUE LOSING FAT
I will reduce my body fat to 35 pounds by the end of 2016.

As I mentioned in my 2015 review, I ended 2015 with a weight of 194.4 pounds and 24.9% body fat. That means my body had about 48 pounds of fat. I’d like to get into the low 180’s, which means I have a target body fat of about 35 pounds. That means I have a target of about 1 pound per month, which is pretty reasonable.

Yes, this was exactly the same resolution I had at this time last year, but I think I can do it. I’ve made a lot of good habit changes and I just need to continue them. What will I continue to do?

  • Eat better, particularly more vegetables
  • Continue weight training and running to burn calories and keep up metabolism
  • Get great sleep
  • Drink lots of water

The big thing I want to do is try to enjoy this process and make it positive. It’s just a little mental shift to look forward to exercise and be appreciative of healthy food.

 

SLEEP AT LEAST 8 HOURS PER NIGHT
My average hours of sleep will be at least 8 hours per night in 2016.

Last year I got to an average of 7.71 hours/night which made me pretty happy. This is something that will continue to be a challenge for me, but I’ve found that it is important. The monthly reviews are a great vessel for keeping me accountable.

 

 

SAVE MONEY

Another cliché resolution. I’m already quite frugal in my day to day, and I furiously track every expense on a spreadsheet so I can reconcile my costs at the end of each month. I did spend A LOT of money on travel in 2015. I don’t regret any of it. I’ve already started to double- and triple-think every purchase now because I know every little bit helps.  But I forsee certain expenses in 2016 and 2017 breaking the bank. These big upcoming expenses may include:

  • New Car: My workhorse Acura 1.7 EL has served me well, but I fear it’s starting to falter and I may need to replace it this year.
  • Destination Bucket-List Marathons: I am looking at doing the Berlin and/or Toyko Marathon(s) in 2017, the cost of the registration, travel, and accommodations will be gargantuan. And I’d love to go back to some of the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend events, but… money…
  • New GPS Watch: I love my Garmin Forerunner 410 and I’ve repaired it more than once. It has over 3400 kilometers recorded on it, and my last Forerunner died around 3900. I can sense it’s already struggling a little and may die on me in the next few months, so while I get the Clinic Instructor discount, I should shell out the $300 or whatever for the new device.
  • Home Renovations: The upstairs bathroom and kitchen are overdue for overhauls.
  • Investing in the future: Possibly a ring, and/or down payment on a new home

How will I save money? By further cutting down on luxury and leisure expenses… except for those expenses that involve spoiling my girlfriend. Now that Disney is done this year I’ll probably focus on many local races I haven’t conquered yet to save on destination race costs.  I’m already pairing down on some “unnecessary” expenses:

  • I cancelled my Runner’s World subscription; that kinda hurt, but I don’t really read the print version anymore anyways
  • I haven’t touched my Warhammer 40k models in months. Perhaps I have given up on the hobby. Perhaps I should sell my unpainted, or even my finished models for a little extra cash
  • My exercise gear collection is rather extensive, and although there are lots of things I’d like to get, I can get by with what I have

 

Visual illustration for saving money and letting it grow
Visual illustration for saving money and letting it grow

 

 

PROMPTNESS

I have actually started getting into a bad habit of arriving just in time or slightly late for some events. I want to adapt the habit of planning to arrive 15 minutes early. Any time I arrive before I can use to mingle, or catch up on correspondence on my phone.

If you're not 15 minutes early you're late
If you’re not 15 minutes early you’re late

 

 

EARN 6.5 MORE PMP PDU’s
I will earn at least 6.5 more PMP PDU’s by the end of 2016.

To keep my PMP certification I’ll need to get 60 Professional Development Units (PDUs) within 3 years of receiving the certification, so by February 2017. I had a great year for collecting PDUs in 2015, in fact I have collected 48.5 already. I’ll be able to get 5 PDU’s just for working, so I need to get at least 6.5 more.

I’ll probably get these with some lunch-time online courses, or listening to some accredited podcasts. It would be nice to knock this out earlier rather than later.

 

 

CONTINUE PUBLISHING MONTHLY REVIEWS
I will post a monthly review after of each month to review my progress

These monthly review are a great feature of this blog. I enjoy being able to summarize a month and review my progress towards the goals I’ve listed in this post. I think I will develop a summary table for each of these review.

 

DOCUMENT MORE
I will do a better job of recording and documenting activities from my life

This is a very vague resolution, but I think it’s important.

For my birthday, my girlfriend Sharise made a photo album of memories we’ve created so far. I found that very touching, and it’s an heirloom I’ll treasure and continue to update. That got me to start to realizing that I can’t remember everything. Reading back on things like blog posts is a nice reminder of times gone by. Monthly reviews and race reports are great pieces for capturing details to remind me of these days.

I worry that some evil hacker could somehow destroy my archives on this blog. I have backups but I will continue to be more vigilant. Perhaps I should print out all posts into a book or binder of some sort?

I also write a diary which I find is a nice way to document things I don’t feel like publishing.

And I feel like I should physically print more photos rather than just sharing them online. It makes it more tangible.

 

BALANCE
Improve life balance by spending more time with loved ones and friends

And last but not least, another really vague, difficult to quantify resolution. I want to make it a priority to set aside time each week for loved ones. I trying to continue spending at least one afternoon each with with my mother. And I’m trying to continue maximizing the number of date nights I can have with my girlfriend Sharise. But it would also be nice to see my friends, many of whom I haven’t seen in months. It’s a scheduling challenge, but I always like a challenge.

I see that Lisa, Robin, and Nicole have already posted their new year’s resolutions. What are your plans and goals for 2016?


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4 Comments »

  1. Emma says:

    Good stuff Paul! And ha, I have an Acura EL too. I’m going to miss it when we replace it – it’s been so phenomenally reliable.

    • You’re a member of “Club EL” too, Emma?! Yes! *high five*
      I’m gonna be so sad when I have to change cars. I liked it so much I thought of getting the contemporary replacement, the Acura CSX, but it requires premium gas: BOOOO!!!

      Maybe I should make sure my next car should have room for a triathlon bike… 😉

  2. Lisa says:

    Those sound like great goals Paul! Try the Whole30 diet with me, I’m enjoying it so far. I’ve lost about 5lbs.

  3. […] As promised, my first of the monthly reviews for 2016 as promised in my New Year’s Resolutions. […]