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Warming Up for 2014

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This picture is from after my very first race ever! [The Pride Run in June]

I heard someone a few days ago say that they were using December as a warm-up for 2014. Rather than waiting for a new year to be awesome, and to start fresh, they were starting now.  My first thought was… THIS IS GENIUS!!! Start today and make December the warm up for a great year ahead.

Over the weekend, I started making plans for how to make this happen. I decided I’d start with all of the things most people do on January 1st: I stocked the fridge with healthy foods and made plans to add more exercise to my routine.  Then I started to think about ways to keep my goals in check.  This past year was literally the first time EVER I stuck to my New Year’s resolution and next year I intend to do the same.  For me, keeping those goals in check means having clear deadlines for achieving them.  So, after filling my apartment with healthy options and creating an exercise schedule, I signed up for a bunch of New York Road Runners races for 2014, and one for this month!  [For those of you who live in the NYC area, signing up to be a NYRR member is amazing.  Its very inexpensive and saves about 10-15 dollars on every race. Check it out!].

Since I already had my Half Marathon coming up next Saturday, it seemed like there was only room for one other race this month, but I am so incredibly excited to run The Jingle Bell Jog this weekend.  Its four miles in Prospect Park in Brooklyn and I think its a great start to my 2014 warm up. I am also SO thrilled that this is the first race I’ll be running with my girlfriend, Mindy.  It’s amazing how having someone in my life who is so motivated, can motivate me!  Even though she typically runs much faster than I do, we’re going to run this one for fun together… I mean there’s going to be Jingle Bells on our shoes and Hot Chocolate at the end! Details on how this race goes to come next week!

I think the thing that is going to make this year’s goals a little more simple to accomplish is the support system I’ve built over the last year.  The people in my life are great when it comes to meeting me for a workout or staying in and cooking rather than going out.  BUT the biggest reason why having these people in my life is so important, is accountability.

For the most part, I’ve learned to be accountable to myself.  At the end of the day, I have to feel pride in who I am and what I’ve achieved.  But there are certainly days when I need to feel accountable to someone else.  When I make plans to meet someone for a run, I’ll always show up.  When I book a Flywheel class with one of the instructors I’ve grown so close to, I know they’re expecting me, and I don’t want to disappoint them.  So, having access to these people will be great on the days when being accountable to myself just isn’t enough.

I think the most important thing about warming up for 2014 in December is that it makes me feel more prepared.  I think that with a year of such huge changes behind me… its hard to imagine how the next will be anywhere near as amazing… and that is a very heavy way to go into a new year.  I’d rather go into knowing that December was my healthiest month (mentally and physically) out of the entirety of 2013, and that will carry me into 2014 with high hopes.  So, thanks to the person who put this idea in my head! I’d love to hear if anyone else out there plans to “warm-up” in December! And if so… what do you have planned?!




About Crystal Carlin

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