5 Highlights of 2014
After enjoying some much-needed down time to close out 2014, I got to thinking about the highlights of the year. While most of it passed pretty quickly, a few things do stand out. It’s funny that you don’t remember things, even events that were huge at the time, when you look back on the year as a whole. I guess it goes to show that good or bad, time moves on and so do we. It’s nice to look back, really appreciate the experiences, and then look forward to what the next year holds. With that said, here are the top 5 things I’m glad I did in 2014.
1. Vacation – We took a week in mid-April and completely unplugged on the beach in Costa Rica. It had been a few years since our last beach vacation, and it was long over-due. That vacation reminded me that the world continues to turn when I’m not around, and unplugging is important for my sanity.
2. 4 week prep phase – I took 4 weeks to really re-set my training. I did all the exercises I had been skipping in the recent months – no feet drills, complexes, no contact lifts, plyos, hamstring/back strength, endurance work, ect. I committed to it, and had Will program everything for me. I felt amazing, and think I counted 11 PRs in that short amount of time (most being doubles, triples, ect). This cycle taught me the importance of variety, but it also built my confidence for what was yet to come.
3. Nationals – This is probably the biggest highlight of the year for me. After that great month of training in the spring, I went back and forth in my mind about going to Nationals. I knew it was tough competition, and that I was in the lower half of the 58kg lifters, but in the end I decided to go. When it came down to it, no matter how scary it was going to be, I knew I’d be glad I went. So I signed up, had the best time training, and enjoyed a 4 day stay in Salt Lake City with Will. I did okay (not quite as well as I hoped), but the experience as a whole taught me to a lot about myself.
4. Listening to my body – I should have learned this lesson in 2013 when I did not take time off after a meet and ended up messing up my neck. I got smarter in 2014, and took a few weeks off after Nationals. I messed around with some Crossfit WODs, did a little running, and just let my body rest. My mind is always ready for lifting, but I struggle to listen to my body when it’s telling me it needs an off day. I’m getting better, so maybe by the end of this year I’ll have it mastered? Here’s hoping!
5. Continuing Education – Every 3 years I have to re-certify with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Seems simple, but I tend to wait until the last few months, and then spend hours reading articles, taking quizzes, and watching webinars on various strength and conditioning topics. I just finished with this a few weeks ago (hence the blog hiatus). Reading these articles brings me up to speed on current research (actual research studies, not just someone’s internet opinion), and motivated me to read more throughout the year.
Now looking forward into 2015….
I have no “resolutions” per say, but I do have a few things I’d like to keep in mind for 2015.
1. Be Brave – Don’t let fear make decisions for you. Push outside the comfort zones, and try new things.
2. Be Humble – Thank those around you for the impact they have in your lives. “It takes a village to _____.” Acknowledge your village.
3. Spend No Time on the Negative – Thoughts, situations, or people. Giving attention to negativity is simply fanning the flames. Take your time and energy elsewhere.