Goodbye 2015…Hello 2016

 

new_years_resolutions_list

It is that time of year again where many of us sit down and make a New Year’s Resolution. I am no different. The real question is not “What will your resolution be?” but instead, “What will you do to ensure you reach your 2016 goals?” The motivation to make a change or start the year fresh is strong in January. But how strong will your motivation be in March, or July, or December?  I am as guilty as the next for setting a goal and losing momentum as time goes on. This year, however, I plan to keep moving forward, keep the momentum strong and this is how I plan to do it.

My 2016 resolution can be summed up in one word….”Growth”. I know…I get it…I know what you are saying….”Gee Courtney, that’s vague!” Sure, it sounds vague, but let me break it down a bit. We all have room to grow in all aspects of our life. We spend the majority of our lives in a state that is comfortable, known territory. Taking chances, getting uncomfortable, and expanding out of your everyday routine is a bit scary. I am ready for the challenge. I want to spend less time being “comfortable” and more time exploring what I am truly capable of…as a mother, companion, friend, and  triathlete. PersonalGrowth_words

My goals as a mother, companion, and friend will be the most challenging. Why? Well, because it is the everyday routine that will be the hardest to step away from and push forward in order to grow. In order to make a change, I have to understand and recognize where I am lacking and where I can improve. I will spend much of my time in the next few days sorting this one out. It is a huge challenge and will require daily, weekly, monthly evaluation.

My goals as a triathlete are a bit easier for me to see and set a plan for, and really, have already started. I already set the goal of completing my first 1/2 Ironman race and I will continue to work towards that goal. I need to focus on pushing myself and being okay with the uncomfortable state during my training sessions. This will help me come race day, when I hope to push myself for 6+ hours to my full capability. But this is not the only area in my triathlon life that I want to expand. I have some pretty exciting news that I have been holding onto…waiting to share with the social media world. But I will save that for the end. (Hahahhaa! I have more nonsense for you to read before I share the good stuff!!)

So, setting the resolution is easy, we get that. Anyone can set a goal. But what are YOU going to do to ensure you stick with the goal? What steps are you going to take to make the goal a priority? How important is this goal to you? Well, I can’t answer any of those questions for you. What I can do, is share with you the steps I take to stay focused.

I tend to set a really big goal, one that will take work and focus to achieve. I know that this goal will take time, a lot of time and this is why I set smaller goals that help me stay focused on the bigger goal. Sometimes I set a weekly goal..something I will have to work towards, but capable of being accomplished in a shorter amount of time.  We all like to feel like we are successful. These smaller goals help keep me focused, less discouraged by the far off goal. Often times, looking at the whole picture can be overwhelming. I am notorious for freaking out and losing focus when I feel like I am not making progress. So set smaller goals to keep the focus and motivation strong.

Another key step I take is to write the goal down. Physically putting it on paper and mapping it out makes it official in my world. Although the path to the ultimate goal will take several unexpected twists and turns, as long as it is written down and you revisit it from time to time, you will see how far you have come and maybe readjust your path to gain forward momentum again. So that is all fine and dandy, but in order to make a change, a real change, your goal HAS to be important to you. It has to be worth your time and effort. Don’t set a goal for someone else…do it for YOURSELF. If it is worth it to you, you will find a way to make it happen.

new-years-inspirational-quotes-fitness-health-memes-9.jpg

Okay, hopefully you get the point of this post. I got a little carried away, but I want 2016 to be a great year…for you, for me, for the stranger who will become a friend. What is the news that I have been holding onto?? Well, it has to do with my growth in 2016.

My resolution really started a few months ago. I reached out to several product companies that support athletes. I was accepted as an ambassador for Honey Stinger and Nuun, both are nutrition companies that supply products that I use in my training and triathlon races. But, even bigger than that, I have acquired my first sponsorship as a triathlete. Yes, I was so excited that I may have peed myself when I found out. TriEverything LLC is a  company that originally started at local triathlons in 2014 and offered items to athletes that they may have forgotten come race day. Forgot your goggles, they had them. Need a visor or sunglasses? No worries. Basically, everything you needed for race day was there if you needed it. They have since expanded to an online store. It is a one stop shop for all things triathlon at a competitive price.  Before TriEverything LLC, I shopped at SEVERAL online stores to get my favorite triathlon needs. Now, it is all in one place. One site, one shipping fee, happy triathlete!! I will share more about the website and discounts as they become available in the new year. Stay tuned!!!!!

I wish you all a very happy new year. Please be safe and ring in 2016 with a smile on your face and a positive outlook for the next 365 days. I can’t wait to share my struggles and triumphs with you as my journey continues.

Goodbye 2015…it’s been great, but 2016 is going to be even better!

Public service announcement…

Around this time every year, I post on Facebook, call family, and remind friends to be a little more cautious.  

 You see, almost 4 years ago, our home gotten broken into a mere 3 days after Christmas. The day before, we had returned from my Mom’s house and I unloaded bags and bags of Christmas presents. Some were still in the decorative holiday bags and others in regular back pack, suitcase type bags. After 2-3 trips back and forth, the car was emptied and the presents were gathered in our living room. I had to sort and organize my, then 4 year old, daughter’s toys and clothes before putting them away in her room. The next day, I left for work around 3pm and wouldn’t be home for several hours. 

As we pulled up to the house that night around 11pm, I knew something wasn’t right. We had left when it was daylight out and now that it was dark, I could see that my bedroom light was on. I hadn’t left it on because I hadn’t turned it on before I left for work. Chills crept through my body. I pulled into our carport and I saw our cat sitting in our OPEN back doorway. I didn’t know whether to puke, cry, scream….I couldn’t move. With my daughter asleep in the backseat, I got out of the car, locked her in, and proceeded into the house. The back door had been pryed open with a crow bar and then kicked in. My house was FLIPPED UPSIDE DOWN. I called Gabe, who was in Fresno (I was living in Modesto at the time) and he yelled at me to get out of the house and call the police. I returned to my car, moved it to the front of the house and called Modesto Police Department. 

The rest isn’t really important. They never caught who did it. We never got the stolen items back. My daughters Christmas was taken from her. 99% of her presents were taken. My world was a complete mess for weeks afterwards. I didn’t feel safe in my own home. It was determined that the person, or people, who had done this, knew my schedule. I left and returned around the same time 5-6 days a week. They had most likely watched me unload the car the day before. They most certainly lived nearby. 

This is where I remind you to be cautious and aware of your surroundings. Back your car into the garage before unloading bags of presents, or groceries. Keep your car and home doors locked. Remove packages from your porch as soon as possible. Keep your garage door shut. Hide bags while out and about in the car. Keep your blinds shut while you are not home. Watch for unknown people/vehicles in your neighborhood. Do everything you can to eliminate the possibility of being broken into. I know it can happen to anyone, at anytime, but you can take steps to make the possibility a little less possible. Protect yourself!! 

Happy Holidays from our house to your!! 

Tis the Season…to stay balanced

a6677d91afaab5d89a5f82b01dd42a1c

With Thanksgiving behind us and Christmas rapidly approaching, I am finding it harder and harder to stick to my daily routine…kids in school, training, eating right, household duties, errands, meals…..

I am a mom of three littles so naturally this time of year brings a whole lot of excitement..and cookies…and breads…and feasts. They just had a week off from school and will have another two weeks off for winter break in 3 short weeks. With them being home, my daily schedule is thrown off. I feel guilty for leaving for my 2-3 hour bike rides, or my 1-2 hour runs, and getting to the pool seems impossible. I find myself putting off my training session to spend time with them. Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a bad thing. I just NEED to find a balance in it all. What did I do in years past? Why is this year so much different? Well, this is the first year that I have trained during the winter months. Every other year, I would finish racing in November and take a few months off. Well, that isn’t an option this year. With Vineman 70.3 just 222 days (not that I’m counting) away, I can’t afford to take 2 months off.

So, I made it through Thanksgiving dinner and the week long break with the kids. I managed to get almost all my workouts in without the kids missing a meal. They like to act like they are going to die when I am gone for more than an hour. It’s wonderful…let me tell you!! But back to the point….I didn’t stuff myself at either Thanksgiving feast (we had 2). I did enjoy a few cookies and a slice of pie. I am not a believer in removing the foods and treats you love, I just have them in moderation. For me, if I allow myself to have a cookie here and there, I don’t feel the need to eat all two dozen when I am finished baking them. I skipped on the hot chocolate as we walked around a neighborhood looking at Christmas lights because I didn’t need it. I skipped Starbucks one morning, when it was offered, because I didn’t need it. I am struggling enough with this winter training and I know if I say yes to ALL the goodies presented in front of me, it will only get harder.

Today when I woke up, there was a post on my facebook page about goals and holding yourself accountable. I taught my spin class this morning and presented them with a similar message. And as the afternoon went on, I found myself thinking about it again and again (which is what prompted this). I have goals. I set daily, weekly, monthly, and long term goals. Some I share with others and some I keep to myself. I know that remaining balanced this next month is going to be key for me in order to reach the goals I have set for myself. I will get my training done because I am committed to reaching my goals. I will spend quality time with my family and friends because I couldn’t do half the things I do without their love and support. They are a key factor in my happiness and success. I will keep food on the table, clean clothes on my family, and groceries in the fridge because my family depends on me to get these things done. I will continue with holiday traditions and create new ones for my children because this is an exciting holiday season for them. I will remain balanced in all areas because, if not, things will get ugly. A stressed out, frustrated, over stimulated mom is not a pretty sight. Take my word for it.web

In the next month, I encourage you all to find your own balance. Holidays can be hard for some. Please be kind to all those you encounter, even the rude ladies at Target. And the grumpy old men in the parking lots. You never know what their story may be. It may be your smile that brightens their day. Enjoy a cookie, slice of pie, or an extra dinner roll. But don’t lose sight of your fitness and health goals. Oh, you don’t have a goal to keep yourself accountable?? MAKE ONE! Don’t be part of the statistic that gains 7-10 pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas and then frantically try to work it off in January. Keep your health and happiness a priority..today…tomorrow..all year long.

large_happy-holidays-title.png