Every year, on my birthday, I think the same thing.  “This year, I’m going to do it.”

“It” changes from year to year.  Because I’m goal-oriented, I like to mix it up.  One year, “IT” was running a half marathon.  Check.  One year, “IT” was finding a new job that was a good fit for me.  Check (and uncheck).  One year, “IT” was getting the financial house in order. 

This year, “IT” has a new urgency.  Today, I turn thirty-five.  It may sound old to you – or really young.  But to me, it sounds like I’m about to go down the backside of a mountain, and I’m not sure what’s coming. 

Thirty didn’t bother me.  Neither did the four intervening years. But this one feels bigger.  I’m not sure why, but I’m taking heed. 

I’m trying to determine what, exactly, I want out of this year.  Gainful, long-term employment?  Probably, in all honesty, my first priority.  A rewarding second job, which fulfills my heart and soul?  Oh, definitely close behind.   A tall, dark and handsome mountain man who can build a fire and whip up a chocolate souffle with his bare hands?  Oh, now, let’s not get too optimistic…

But when I think about what the year really may hold, I’m also focused on the active part of life. What do I want to accomplish this year?  What goal can I set that will motivate me to work out, have fun, and enjoy the company of friends and family?  I’ve been thinking through a few goals, and this is what I’ve come up with (knowing my own heart, my own body, and what my soul needs right now…).  So, without further ado, some goals:

Goal 1: Run a 5k every six weeks with my friend Kelly from now till next spring, beginning in November (once I’m cleared for running). Why this goal?   To encourage me to run consistently, with low pressure, building up to no more than 3 miles, 3X/week. This will allow me to get back to a consistent fitness routine without the pressure of doing a half marathon hanging over my head.  I’m also looking forward to enjoying running more!  With only 45 minutes out, I don’t have any excuse!

Goal 2: Run the June 5k, 2010 in under 40 minutes.   Why this goal?  With added focus on regular running, I will also be working on weight loss.  If I can meet my weight loss goals (or at least make some progress on them) then I should also be able to meet this running goal for a 5k.  I haven’t run a 5k in under 40 minutes since 1999.  It’s time!

Goal 3: Hike at least once per month, for at least 2 hours.  Why this goal?  Because it makes me happy.  When I’m not worried about bears, coyotes, and elk (today’s current hiking complications) I’m in love with the peacefulness of being outside on the trail, without a soul around.  It’s just good for my soul, and because I’m not worried about weather, this is something I can do without fail.

Goal 4: Plan one active vacation with family – and one with friends – for the next year.  Why this goal?  Because it re-emphasizes the role that activity has in my life – with the people I care about most.  And these kinds of vacatoins are FUN!  I’m not sure what shape these will take this year, but the fun in this is that knowing that these are on the horizon….

There are other goals – but these are the ones related to activity and fitness for the year.    And if, in the meantime, Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome souffle-making, fire-starting mountain man shows up and sweeps me off my feet, well, I won’t object to that, either.  🙂

Next up: a recap of some of the hiking this week in Colorado.

In the interim, thanks so much for reading – and for being such amazing, active women and men. You’ve made 34 a great year, and I’m looking forward to continuing to write for you in 35!!!

See you on the path!

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