Love what you are doing
The motto for the Melrad Racing squad is “Keep It Fun.” If you are having fun, you are happy, in the moment and engaged in the process. This is the key to being resilient during the slow, non-linear, incremental improvement required to master endurance sport. Unless you are a professional, you are spending all of your leisure time training for this goal, so it should be something you enjoy doing. Even if the work is hard, successful professionals have fun with the process. Make sure that there is an element of fun built into your daily, weekly, monthly and yearly planning.
Finding a great training group, engaging in some of the types of workouts you really like and keeping a light, positive attitude about training keeps it fun. One of my athletes likes to call hard workouts “no-fun fun.” This perspective makes the hard work what it is supposed to be – a fun challenge to create improvement.
Consider the above three elements and revisit your top-three outcomes and process goals for the year. Would you change anything in order to incorporate some of the above ideas? You should have at least three goals that are determined with the following guidelines:
A WILDEST DREAMS GOAL If this is an outcome goal, this goal is possible if every bit of your process, preparation and luck are in line, and you have the race of your life. This is the stretch goal – it should sit just outside your current limits. If this is a performance or experience goal, this is a dream venue, a day you outstripped your own limits for performance or you committed to doing something outside your comfort zone.
A MAXIMIZING CURRENT POTENTIAL GOAL As an outcome goal, this is an attainable goal that is challenging, but realistic. You have been competing at this level, but this goal proves you are ready for the next step. This could also be committing to your first club (experience goal), travelling to your first big race or something that is within your comfort zone, but has just never happened.
A REAFFIRMATION OF PROGRESS GOAL As an outcome goal, this is likely a stepping stone to Goal No. 2 and represents an achievement that will make the season a success. This is a good race and a solid performance, but maybe not quite the next level yet. As an experience, it could be a smaller step outside your comfort zone, a step toward becoming your best self, or even just committing to creating these types of goals.
Dreaming up three goals for the season starts with a fearless commitment to challenging your limits. With that commitment you can create meaningful experiences, inspire those around you, and enjoy each training day. These are the reasons why your goals are important and how you make them reflect what you really want to achieve.
Melanie Mcquaid won Triathlon Canada’s Multisport Athlete of the Year award after winning the ITU World Cross Triathlon Championships in Penticton, B.C., last year.