The evolution of resolutions
From getting faster to just feeling better
I am one of those guys who makes New Year's resolutions. I used to write them, confident that with hard work, success was guaranteed. I soon learned that circumstances often dictated otherwise.
"I will race faster and run more." That was my resolution for 1976. Next to it I spelled out the specifics; key races I planned to run, personal bests I planned to better, and a new annual mileage goal that surpassed the best of previous years.
I kept that same resolution until 1984, when I damaged my kneecap and my running went from 100 miles a week to zero. I didn't log a mile for three months. A running junkie without his daily mileage fix is a desperate individual.
Unable to run and needing to exercise, I began to paddle a canoe. Soon I was able to canoe commute across two lakes to the school where I taught, a 10-mile round trip. That summer I entered my first canoe race. Though I began running again in July, I continued to paddle and compete in canoe races. When winter arrived, I entered cross-country ski competitions.
On New Year's Eve of that year, I resolved that in 1985 I would "compete in running, paddling and cross-country ski races." It was an acknowledgment that my days of running personal bests were behind me. My chart of annual miles run would move from an up slope, peaking at over 4,000 miles, into a Bell Curve slide. Having a history of trying and failing to run through injuries, I made a second resolution to "run often, race well and not get injured." To achieve that, I decided to be proactive instead of reactive. My new credo was "Why not avoid the stuff that had got me injured before?"
Read the entirety of Dave Foley's silent sports resolutions in the January 2012 print edition of Silent Sports. To order a copy, call 715/369-3331. To avoid missing future issues, subscribe online here.