We’re nearly a month into 2018. Many people who subscribe to the ‘New year, new you!’ philosophy, but they simply wish for change aren’t making it happen. Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions? How are they going? Did you plan ahead and have a clear goal?
Depending on your long-term goal, you may need to break it into a series of short-term goals to make it achievable. You should also make your goals SMART:
A great example of someone who set a SMART goal and followed it through in 2017 is the former GB 1500m international runner Colin McCourt.
What was Colin McCourt’s goal?
McCourt had retired after failing to make the London Olympics in 2012. In the intervening period, he put on weight, rising to almost 15 stone (210lbs/95kg).
After seeing an old photo of himself in his international vest, he couldn’t believe how much he had changed. It prompted discussion with some of his old running buddies and he took a bet in 2017 that he could run under 16 minutes for 5k within a year. The forfeit would be to tattoo the names of his 17 friends who laid the bet on his body. Or if he accomplished the feat he would collect a tidy £100 from each. This was no easy feat. His last recorded run had been a 24-minute parkrun in early 2016.
With the added pressure of his journey being documented through social media and an online blog, there was no escape. Yet, on Saturday 18 November, Colin McCourt did it. He clocked 15:38 at a race in Burnley to bring a happy ending to the tale.
What is his next challenge?
After reaching his goal, he told Athletics Weekly: “In eight months I’ve gone from a 24-minute 5km runner to a 15:38 5km runner. It has been a mental year. It just shows that if you can just run and do little sessions and tempos, you can take it to the next level if you want to. It’s just believing in yourself and doing it.”
McCourt’s next challenge is to try to break 2:30 for the marathon – follow his progress on Instagram.