Setting New Running Goals

B2lCRhvCEAEI-BO.jpg largeIt’s been said before and I’ll say it again: Goals are achieved when properly set. With the new year right around the corner, this time of the year is best to revisit the goals you set this year and assess how you did. It’s also time to set new ones–starting the year with fresh objectives and new aspirations.

The best way I believe in setting goals is following S.M.A.R.T.


I don’t believe in lofty goal setting, such as “I want to make it to the Olympics.” This is a realistic goal for a select few. I also like non-abstract goals. “I want to do a marathon” isn’t specific. “I want to do such and such marathon in 2015” is specific.

Let’s go through S.M.A.R.T.

Specific: To set specific goals Top Achievement, recommends asking the “W” questions:

Who:      Who is involved?

What:     What do I want to accomplish?

Where:    Identify a location.

When:     Establish a time frame.

Which:    Identify requirements and constraints.

Why:      Specific reasons, purpose or benefits of accomplishing the goal.

See my paragraph above. “I want to run such and such marathon in 2015.” This is specific.

Measurable: Add in something concrete to your goal, such as “I will run a marathon in under four hours.” This is quantifiable and you know you will need to add speed workouts in, probably tempo runs, etc. to reach your goal.

Attainable: You cannot set a goal out of your reach. You’ll become frustrated and give up. Don’t shoot for something you know you can’t do. If you know 26.2 miles is out of the question, but a 10K is realistic and will get you off the couch, set that goal. You’ll achieve it and feel empowered.

Realistic: Same as above. Don’t shoot for the moon.

imely: Set goals within a certain time. “I’ll run a marathon in 2014” or “I’ll hit the gym three times a week for three months straight.” You can even add in a month: “By June 1st, I’ll have completed a half marathon in under two hours.” That’s a perfect example of a goal.

Happy goal setting for 2015!