Home > Uncategorized > Unachievable Goals

Unachievable Goals

I’ve been thinking a lot about my goals for Lonestar and Louisville over the past few weeks.  I had meant to post this earlier in the week, but the combination of school, work, and moot court postponed that.  Now I’m sick and had to take off from work, school, moot court practice, and training, so I thought I could use this time semi-productively.

So here are my goals.  I figure if I put them down in writing, there’s more accountability for me achieving them.

Lonestar 70.3:

Swim – 45:00

Bike – 3:00:00

Run – 1:45:00

Total – 5:30:00

Louisville Ironman:

Swim: 1:00:00

Bike: 5:00:00

Run: 3:45:00

Total: 9:45:00

As I put those times down on paper.  There is a part of me that reacts the same way as every person I’ve told up to this point, “you’re an idiot!  No way you can do that!”  And you know what, maybe I can’t.  But as I’ve said, I’m a “go big or go home” sort of guy 🙂

When I was a teacher, we used the SMART acronym.  Goals were to be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.  I’ve seen this acronym pop up in regards to athletic goals as well.  Not to disagree with experts, but I’m not a fan of the Realistic part.  I think, at least for me, I need to keep pushing past the realistic and go for those “unachievable” goals.  I’m not afraid to fail at these goals, which I think is one of the attitudes that the SMART approach can foster.  We get so focused on attainable, realistic goals that we forget that real change comes when we reach for the unattainable and unrealistic.  We hold back when we should push forward because we are afraid that, in failing, we will lose something of our self or our pride will be hurt or that we will be shamed in the eyes of others.  We play it safe and never find out how strong we really are (yes, even in failure).  We end up living mediocre lives or Thoreau’s “lives of quiet desperation.”

I refuse to be that guy.

Hell, this is why I signed up for Louisville in the first place.  I will compete less than a year from the day I started getting back in shape, which still seems, at times, an unrealistic goal.  I won’t fail in my goal of finishing, even if by the end I am dragging my battered body toward the finish line with my hands 🙂

I might not meet my goal of a sub 10 Ironman.  I’m okay with that.  I am not my goals.  If I fail, my identity and sense of self will still be intact.  I am simply not going to let a fear of failing keep me from setting that as my goal.  I have approximately seven months to train and I have the determination to keep going.  Keep me accountable.  Ask me how my training is going.  Encourage me or give me a kick in butt, I’ll need both!

Accomplish these goals or not, it’s going to be a hell of a year! 🙂

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,
  1. January 20, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Awesome, sir! Keep at it! 🙂


    “We play it safe and never find out how strong we really are (yes, even in failure).”

    I’d like to modify that to->

    “We play it safe and never find out how strong we really are (ESPECIALLY in failure).”

    Take care! Thanks for posting! 😀

  2. March 9, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    Hey Mike, congrats on putting these down on cyber-paper. That is half the battle!

    Your first year of triathlon (I think this is your first year) is all about experiences. Enjoy every race you do, especially if it is your first time at that distance. You will surprise yourself if you relax, and go into race with the attitude that you’re going to have a blast during that whole day. A friend described his first Ironman as the “most pampered training day of his life”. People fed him, cheered for him, and catered to his every need. Naturally he loved every minute of it.

    That said, the general rule of thumb for 1/2 Iron to Ironman times is to double your 1/2 IM time and add 1 hour. If 5:30 become a reality at Longhorn (which is totally doable – I rode the bike course in Jan while on a training camp, and it is FAST), then your IM goal would be sub-12 hours. I know this because my 1/2 IM PR is 5:33, and I’m shooting for 1:10 swim, 5:45 bike, and 4:00 run = 11:50. Anything under that and I’ll be ecstatic.

    Hope this helps – can’t wait to see the race report from Longhorn in a month!

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: