When you are always working on improving anything in your life, it is important to have goals. I have all sorts of personal goals for myself in addition to my professional goals at work. I am obviously overly optimistic when setting goals for myself and there have been plenty of times I fell short of meeting my goals.

I can tell you as happy and shiny and new setting fresh goals can make you feel, not meeting them feels extremely disappointing. Failure tastes like shit.

If there is anything disappointment has taught me it is to expect less. Less expectations automatically means less disappointment. I prefer happy and shiny.

Then I added fitness goals to my list of goals. I have always tried to be active and fit (except for the period in college where all I did was drink a whole lot and eat pizza and Egg McMuffins.) Since all that though, I have been working on being healthy.

This past year I started working with a trainer who is also a nutritionist. I am held accountable by her and by the fact that she makes me weigh in every week with her. We track my weight as I go up and down on the scale. I have the workout thing down, but my diet is a work in progress. She has been crucial in meeting my goals, not only my weight goals, but also pushing me in my workouts. She also helped me tweak my diet enough that I was able to lower my crazy high cholesterol with no medication.

When we started meeting with each other she told me in order for her to work with me I needed to do two running workouts each week. She gave me written workouts that went week by week and I was to follow them. Only problem, I couldn't run a mile without walking at some point.

She encouraged me and we took it a week at a time. My goal was to run, some reasonable distance (more than 1 mile and less than say, a half marathon) without dying. So I ran. I hated it, but each week I did her running workouts at least twice per week, sometimes more. I was slow, but soon enough I could run 1 mile and before long I could run several miles.

I never thought I could be a person who runs, and although I don't really love it,  (the runner's high people talk about is lost on me) I can do it. I am slow, but I run between 9-12 miles each week, not day, week....let's not get ahead of ourselves!

Then I started TRX and could hardly get through class. It was painful, sometimes embarrassing and incredibly challenging. I had to push myself to do things I never thought I could do. I set a new goal for myself, I wanted to do boy push-ups. Again, slowly but surely I worked on them and as of today I can not only do boy push-ups, I can even do a few with my feet suspended in the TRX straps.

Fulfilling those goals inspired me to continue finding small, attainable goals for myself. It feels good to have something to work towards and stays in the back of my head when I need to push through a hellish workout.

My next goal, do a pull-up. Yes, I would love to do more than a single pull-up, but I am also trying to set a goal I can actually accomplish. Just saying it out loud scares me because pull-ups are hard, really, really hard. I know some pretty fit people and they even struggle with this exercise.

It will not be an easy goal to meet and since I just turned 35, I am well aware that I may be 40 before I can do one, if I ever can. This goal is pretty far out of reach for me. It will be a ton of work to check this one off the list.

I may fail, but I will not quit trying.


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