As competitive athletes, we are constantly working towards a goal. Some of our goals may be big, whilst others may be small, and achievable simply within training. It is these goals that keep us motivated to always go one step further.
A ‘goal’ is the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result. Goals are something we persistently work towards with the hope of achieving them. We set ourselves goals that we believe to be realistic, otherwise our motivation to strive for them would not be at its highest.
All my life, my goal has been to be the best runner I can be. I still don’t know what ‘the best runner I can be’ is, but this is my overarching goal. I am willing to work my hardest, be as committed as I can, and see what the best I can be is. Although this is my main goal, there are many other goals that have to come before this.
Initially my goal was position orientated. At school, I was always driven to win the races I entered. At this time, I was entering low-key races, competing against individuals of all ages and partaking in school races. My goal was to increase my race experience and come at the top of my age category. Once I had achieved this and worked my way up from local, to regional, to county level races, I realised my goals would have to change.
I was beginning to believe running was something I could do well in, and test my limits in. As my race level got higher, time became the next focus, and still is. I would have to take every stage as it came and regularly set goals to help me achieve what I wanted.
In the later stages of school my goals took a dramatic turn for the worst, they were no longer solely about my running, but about my body image, something I believed would benefit my running. After multiple years of struggling to achieve a self-destructive goal, something in my mind switched, my goals changed. I realised who I had become was not who I wanted to be, and the goals I had set were not going to help me in my future running career, I was trying to achieve something that would destroy me.
My focus then turned to health and strength. My aims were to develop a healthier way of thinking, learn to be positive, become a stronger athlete, and most importantly control my mental strength conductively.
I channelled what had become negative determination, into a positive goal. I was back on track and willing to turn my body into that of a strong athlete, a stronger athlete than I had ever been.
As I strengthened, my next goal was to race again. I wanted to get back on the start line and regain my race confidence, I had to revert to the basic goals. This didn’t take long. After a few races as a stronger athlete, I knew I could push it.
I then achieved a goal bigger than I had ever thought possible, especially at that time. I became 2nd U20 in the UK for 10k and achieved elite status. Something I never ever thought would be achievable. This only goes to show, that if you put your mind on something and set your goals smartly, it is amazing what you could achieve.
Whilst currently my goals are focused on recovery, my overarching goal remains the same, I am willing to take my recovery and rehab as seriously as possible in order to become the best runner I can be. It won’t be long, and I know my goals are getting ever higher and ever more achievable. I have so much more I want to achieve, I’m just waiting for my time.
Although, I didn’t, and still don’t know what my potential is, this is something I am willing to work towards, whilst succeeding at all the little goals I set along the way.
What do you want to achieve? What are your goals?
I love to run and I love to write, so I write about running!