06 Jan Embracing Joy in Every Stride: Endurance Athlete Resolutions for a Fulfilling 2024 Season
BY KYLE CUTLER
We are leaving the season of Strava recaps and transitioning into the season of 2024 goal-setting and resolutions. As endurance athletes, we understand setting goals. We have goal races, race day goals, and work-out goals; we can even find ways to set goals within goals. Goal setting is good, but where do resolutions fit in for us?
My suggestion is that perhaps good resolutions in 2024 for endurance athletes could be focused on how we approach the sport that we love and to actually enjoy it. I know that I have been guilty of being so focused on the big goal and all the daily goals that are associated with getting there, that I have lost the simplicity, joy, and gift of the sport.
Maybe I am the only one, but just in case I am not, here are a few quick resolution thoughts:
- Try a new distance or race. Sure, it might not fit neatly into the training plan, but there are so many great events throughout the year to enjoy! Maybe this is that one race where you do not set a goal or look at the watch and just do it for fun. If you are reading this article, chances are you know where to find the Stellafly calendar of events.
- Volunteer. This is beyond the normal race director call out for help. I have found volunteering at races has helped me see an event from a different view, along with meeting new people. Plus, you can make it FUN for you and the participants!
- Stretch, cross-train, & off days. Listen to your coach and your plan. Don’t get caught up in who is doing what in your Strava feed. Listen to your body and do what is best for you to get to race day injury-free.
- Enjoy the training cycle. Celebrate the workouts that go well; don’t dwell on those that don’t align with the pace chart. Enjoy the company of those you are training with. If you are newer to endurance sports, let me tell you some of my fondest memories have little to do with the goals I have achieved and are more about the people who I trained with during that period.
- Don’t let your watch dictate your fun. I am of the generation who had to ask their parents to drive them in a car to mark off the miles for the next run. Now we have smartwatches, which can be great training companions, but they can also get in the way of fun and the simplicity of it all. Maybe for your next easy workout, you either silence the watch or do not use it at all; after all, most of us already have at least one route where we know exactly every mile mark. Or just run by feel and for a specific time, which is how I trained in the early days running when there was not someone with a driver’s license to help.
I am sure that there could be a few others to add to this list, but I bet your mind is already working through what those resolutions might be that help you enjoy the sport more in 2024.
Personally, one of my 2024 goals is to not let the busyness of life be an excuse that gets in the way of my health and fitness. One of my resolutions is geared toward finding ways to become more active in the running community where I live.
I would love to hear your goals and resolutions for 2024. Share them on the Stellafly social channels.
Here’s to a great 2024 endurance season. May you stay injury-free, hit your goals, and LOVE doing it. See you at a race SOON!