Successful businesses are run carefully, methodically and with a distinct focus. One of the business lessons I always learned both in school and in practice is that a in order to succeed a business must have a clear vision and established goals that can be measured. Successful businesses are those that remain focused and there is no reason to believe that other aspects of our lives have to be any different.
As I started planning my 2010 season and was faced with the complexities of race schedule, the training plans, identifying equipment, coordinating with the family schedule, welcoming a new child and managing work requirements, I realized that the approach had to be structured just as a business needed to be. To that end, defining a clear long-term vision, establishing challenging yet achievable goals and measuring those goals was the next logical step to my 2010 season planning.
In my opening post to this blog, we discuss my vision but for the sake of repeating it: My vision is “to complete an Ironman in my lifetime while balancing family, business, technology and sports“. This seems easy and clear enough and once the vision is established, defining the goals becomes important. For 2010 my goals are the following and in fact build upon each other:
- Remain injury free
- Complete an Ironman 70.3
- Complete a minimum of 2 Olympic distance triathlons
- Improve my first sprint triathlon time by 10 minutes or more
I feel these goals are clear and measurable. The first three are very binary (either I did or I didn’t) and the last one is very measurable. Virginia Run was my first triathlon and I finished in 1:23:49. As we get closer to the race we’ll break this down and how I plan to shave 10 or minutes off of my time. For the other races, I don’t intend to establish a goal. The 70.3 will be hard enough to finish and the olympic distance races will be to help prep for the 70.3 While they will help me gage my performance and assist in tuning my season, I don’t want to put too much focus on these races out of fear of getting distracted away from my top two goals of remaining injury free and finishing Ironman Miami.
Now that we’ve worked on the goals, I’m sitting down with my partners in crime in this triathlon endeavor to work out our specific race schedule for next year. I never thought that planning a season would be this much fun or that I’d be this excited about it.