15. Finding My Rhythm

Beach Boulevard, Aberdeen, 2016

One of the things I’m looking to achieve this year is to run a 10k race, which is why three to four times a week I grab my gear and hit the road. I use the MapMyRun app which paces me during the week from a leisurely 2k easy run on a Tuesday to a longer (now 5k+) run on the following Sunday.

As my run times improve and the distances lengthen, what I realise is that my natural predilection for just hitting go and running works fine for speed but works against my distance, as I am often far too winded to post a useful time once that initial burst of energy has fizzled out.

Being paced by the app has allowed me to find my own rhythm, a pace that allows me optimise both overall time and distance. None of my split times come close to challenge my top speed, but by running at that speed for longer, I find I make better progress overall. Therein lies the lesson for me… Find my rhythm.

01. On Resolutions

journey-of-a-thousand-miles

Image Source

As has been the case with every year since I can remember, I rang the new year in at church, taking the opportunity to reflect on 2016 and my plans for 2017 as the year turned.

As part of preparing for that, I took time out to reflect on where I was on achieving the wider goals that underpin the seven focus areas I have identified as part of my Life Plan. It is fair to say that it makes for gory reading, the details of which I’ll have to spare you. The cliff notes version is that, like everyone else, there are a few areas where I am pretty much where I want to be (Causes & Charity, Work & Career), a few where I have put in a decent shift (Financial, Physical & Health, People and Social) and a couple where I’ve gone backwards since the end of 2015 (Spiritual, Personal & Mental Development).

Rather than make a big song and dance about resolutions for this new year, I decided to go for a number of priorities which will guide my life and activities in 2017:

  1. S: Growing the relationship, with a formal decision on marrying the hopeful outcome
  2. Writing: Daily on here as guided by life and any of a number of prompts I follow and weekly at A Bloke’s Life.
  3. Online Radio (Radio 31): Supporting a relaunch of the Behind the Music show I was part of last year and also the launch of L’s new one, In Conversation.
  4. Church Community: Progressing the set up of a space for the young, single blokes at the church I currently serve on and prioritising monthly meetups with the two young chaps I met up with on and off through 2016
  5. Music: Learn to play the guitar and volunteering for the Christmas Carol Mass choir for 2017. I’m also minded to get more involved with one of the less traditional vocal ensembles in my local community. Not firmed this one up yet though.
  6. Diet and Exercise: Eat LCHF, complete the MapMyRun 10k training program and run an actual 10k race.
  7. Learning: About AI, neural networks and potential engineering applications, particularly in my field (Corrosion & Materials)

It is shaping up to be a critical year already. Hopefully I devise a means for regularly checking in and staying accountable to these commitments.