Start as you mean to go on …

This morning … after a rather long sleep … I got up late and Fit Girl and I went a New Years Day run time blow off the cob webs.

The weather was ok, not too cold and not too blowy, with no rain. We went an easy 4 miles to the new transport museum and back.


Before I started, I had a bit of a sore head, and I really didn’t feel like it. As you likely know, I gave up alcohol just over 10 years ago, so it wasn’t a hangover… (thankfully)… more like a sinus headache. I was pretty sure the run would clear it, and lucky for me it did.

I’ve been setting goals for a while now… ever since in 2008 I decided it was time to shift some weight and get fitter and healthier. Over the next 6 months I embraced exercise and ate a bit better, and gratefully the lbs came off.

See this post for more:


Then the goals changed… to running a 5k, a 10k and a triathlon for charity. Then over the years I pushed myself to train for half a marathons and at the end of 2010 I ran my first marathon. 2011 was my first official marathon for breast cancer care… and since then I’ve kept on running.

In 10 years I’ve run just over 10,000 miles, and although 2019 was a bit of a push in December to get up to 1,000 miles. Along the way I’ve had many gadgets to help me, and even more friends and clients to help me be motivated, and I’ve motivated them.

Gadgets include – a garmin to track my miles and heart rate (now with music on my 645), and the heart rate monitor strap, aftershockz bone conduction headphones and my wee Nikon key mission 80 camera (which I’m sad to say seems to be discontinued now).

People are too many too mention, but I’m grateful for all the runs I’ve done with others. In 2019 I seems to run 95% of my runs with others, it’s a great position to be in and one I hope to continue going forward.

Now here are my fitness goals for 2020:

It seems 1,000 miles is about average for me each year. It seems like a good goal to set. But this year I’ll set it at the start of the year and keep on top of it (instead of having to cram in many miles in December!) if I aim for 80-85 miles each month, with a few lesser months and a few lower months that should do it.

So goal 1 for 2020 for me is: run 1,000 miles. (Just 996 miles to go then!)

For 2019 and previous years, the months I tended to run a lot was when I had a race planned in – March 2019 I did two half marathons, October 2019 I did a half marathon… and the months before them had higher mileage. So it’s clear that events motivate me to run and train.

And it’s important for me to have some easy months training wise when I’m on holiday, so I’ll factor them (March and late June) as lower months.

I’m 40 in 2020 and although I’ve written before about how bad and painful marathons can be… and I’m vocal about that too… it seems the pain of the rather warm London 2018 has worn off… and I’ve entered a marathon for 2020.

(See my post here about what they don’t tell you about running marathons: ouch – which I haven’t re read recently – maybe I should?!… ).

On top of that I’ve entreated the Garscube 10k on 19 January, and it would be great if I could do an event per month… I’ve pencilled in some others… but I’m a bit short of an event in February and September- any ideas (10k to 20 miles) gratefully accepted. Ideally in Scotland, or maybe north England. Or maybe I’ll just do a run that fits in with my training.

So goal 3: train for and run the Strathearn marathon at the start of June and aim for an event every 1-2 months.

Then there’s strength training. As part of getting fit in 2008 I joined a gym and the instructors showed me what to do. But by bit I learned what worked and I read up on it as I went too.

Since then I’ve learned a lot and had some PT with the handsome Ross Jackson from lean lads lifestyle… (not that I want to be a lean lad, but it’s safe to say he knows what he’s talking about). And now I’ve got our own Garagym which has everything we need on our doorstep.

I’ve learned what works for me and I’m keen to do circuit training and HIIT work on the bike, alongside weights work – compound moves, progressively increasing the weight I lift.

This should cause changes in my body, which as I’ve been getting older… my weight I creeping back up again, but I’m not making that a goal – except for keeping a track on it to see what changes and progress I make.

Men… you can turn off at this if you want… Recently I’ve been reading about how it’s good for women to train in then with their menstrual cycle… I’ve been tracking my cycle in my garmin app for a few months now and it’s 28 days long on average, so it can be split into 2 blocks – before ovulation and after.

I’ll not go into detail about it all, but I’ve made a four week training plan which I’ll share later. It’s basically strength training in the first two weeks before a PB session 2 weeks in, then a mixture of HIIT and circuits in the second two weeks of the cycle.

I’ll start it when I go back to work, and this week I’m doing a few circuit sessions to get my body used to it.

So goal 3: compliment my running with strength training which suits my lifestyle and body.

My other goal is to not to do with fitness, and I’ll share that soon… but if it all works out, it should help me be more settled than I was in 2019 and should help me to achieve the goals above too.

Now if you’re looking to start as you mean to go on and set some goals in 2020, you can too.

Way back in 2012/13 when I was about 4-5 years into my journey of change… I wrote this – if youre waiting for a sign – this is it –

If you’re looking to make some changes, give it a read and it might help you.

Your goals don’t need to be as lofty as running 1,000 miles a year – (remember I started off from scratch in 2008 and just aimed to run and do the gym more to lose weight).

They could be as simple as walking 4-5 times a week, or changing what you eat and drink to be more healthy. Or walking 10,000 steps a day.

You don’t need to make it a New Years resolution, just use the new year as a push to start strongly and afresh again 1-3 goals, and get others to help and support you. What will you do?

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