Like any good type-A runner I’ve been pondering my running goals lately. Now that I’m done having babies I can finally devote more than one or two training cycles to going after my PRs. It’s exciting! But when I think about what my ultimate time goals are, I want to follow my own advice and dream REALLY big and really push myself and GO for something. Something big, like an OTQ. But after I say I want to go for an OTQ I say things like this:
- even though everyone wants to go for an OTQ.
- even though now that I’m a mother of three I might not have the time and energy I need to do it.
- if I am physically capable of running that fast.
- if I’m actually a marathoner, which I suspect I might not be considering I haven’t managed a PR since 2007.
Are you like me? Do you qualify your goals with (let’s face it) excuses? Are you in actuality a little embarrassed to articulate your big dreams? Newsflash: it’s time we drop those excuses, stop with the embarrassment and be proud of our ambition!
For some reason, we women often have a hard time being ballsy. I for one find myself often worried what other people think of me even though I know that’s ridiculous to worry about. Whether it’s nature or nurture, it’s engrained in me. Will “they” think I’m dumb if I tell them I want to go for the OTQ? What if I fail? Will “they” all say “told you so!” and laugh at me behind my back? What if I change my mind? Will “they” think I just crumpled under the pressure of imminent failure? What if I really CAN’T commit because of the kids or my health or family obligations or going back to work or … You get the picture.
Because of this fear of judgment some of us never even make lofty goals and seemingly remain content in our mediocrity when we really might not be. Others, like me, might seem ambitious, but because we fear that judgment we’re always qualifying those big goals.
The problem with qualifying these goal statements, as this post on No Meat Athlete so artfully explains, is that it gives us an out to not achieve our goals. When I qualify my goals I feel like I’m buffering myself from the disappointment of not meeting the goal and acknowledging all the judgment I feel others might pass on me for making the goal in the first place. But as the NMA post explains, the qualification actually make it really easy to not achieve the goal – it sets me and others like me up for failure.
Now that I know this, I can’t help but wonder if all those disappointing marathons weren’t some self-fulfilling prophesy that resulted from me qualifying my goals for those races. Who knows. What I do know is that it’s time to stop giving myself that out.
In our new year’s resolution post, I stated that my resolution is to become more fearless about my running, and being able to fearlessly articulate my goals is the first step. To become the fearless runner I want to be I need to articulate my lofty goals without giving myself an out to not achieve them and without embarrassment and worrying what other people will say about me for claiming these goals as mine.
So my long term goal for running is to OTQ.
And that’s all I have to say about it.
What is your running goal? Do you ever hear yourself qualifying your goals?