Tuesday, March 13, 2012

What winter was that and setting S.M.A.R.T. goals?

Winter, such as it was (or wasn't) is done. It's a warm 13C...that's '+13C' and even the breezes no longer have that shredding icy chill to them.

I had hoped to supplement my Catriking diary with tales from our cross-country ski ventures...but there just wasn't anything to report.

We had a winter punctuated by a very warm January and only one or two so-called "cold snaps" that never seemed to go much beyond two or three days. Any snow we did get, and we did get some, was almost always followed by several hours of freezing rain. As any skier will tell you, freezing rain puts a swift and annoying end to any skiing plans. Freezing rain wrecks trails - it just does.

However, we did manage to get out a few times. Adam made 8 trips while I did a mere 5. The reason we didn't always head out together is partly from adapting to the new medication I'm taking for MS and partly because I just didn't want to. Don't get me wrong, it's not that I did not want to enjoy skiing along the disused rail line about 400 metres behind our house; it's just that seeing the feeble view of some snow but mostly ice just didn't really put me in the mood to head out.

Now, approaching the ides of March, and with temperatures forecast to touch +20C by this Sunday, my thoughts turn to catriking. As the catriking season is longer than the ski season, increasingly so over time I notice, I will have a lot of time to head out. That I am looking forward to doing.

As with each season, I normally set goals for myself in my hobbies. For instance, the winter of 2010-2011, I had set a ski goal of doing 100 kilometres in a season and wound up doing roughly 67 kilometres over a short and not-all-that-great season. I didn't set any ski goals for the winter of 2011-2012 because it just didn't look as though it would be a particularly snowy one...and, sadly, I was right.

The catriking season 2011, I had set a goal of triking 100 kilometres in one day but just couldn't do it. The progression of my MS, though still subtle, still made it impossible for me to trike more than about 55 kilometres in a day.

So, I now ask myself whether it is desirable or even necessary to set a specific catriking goal for me for 2012. What would be the point to setting any goal when I'm not always sure I will be mobile at all? Well, the answer to the first question is a definite "yes". It is necessary (for me anyway) to set some kind of goal. The trick, of course, would be to determine what that goal would be, whether it's a distance or time goal. I'm more inclined to try to set a distance goal so I'll see what I'm feeling once we free our beloved trikes from their winter-cave (aka garage). As for what the point is in setting goals, that, too, is important.

It's important to set goals so that we feel motivated to make them come to pass. Otherwise, we may find ourselves feeling poorly at the end and that isn't good for one's psychological or spiritual health. It's probably not good for one's physical health either. The setting of a goal ought to incorporate the 5 principles I use and used to teach.


Yes, it spells the word 'SMART'. As that is how we like to perceive ourselves to be it would certainly make sense to keep these 5 principles in mind. I will do so and then write more about this


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