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This year I’m challenging myself to 13 different things. Why 13? Because it’s 2013, and it just seemed fitting. I sat down a week ago to start formulating some of the challenges, and I tried to hit a few different areas of health. One thing I did in 2012 was to track every run, walk, bike ride, elliptical, swim, and row that I did the entire year. It was pretty interesting to see the breakdown in these areas. I’m planning to challenge myself to do a bit more in these areas than I did last year! To be clear, I’m obviously planning to do more than what’s on this list, but these are some of the challenges I’ve come up with to complete this year.

13 Challenges In 2013

  1. I challenge myself to run 250 miles. I ran 215 miles in 2012, and this gives me a little room to grow. I get injured really easily, so I’m hoping that I can realistically accomplish this.
  2. I challenge myself to walk 500 miles. In 2012 I walked 395 miles, which is a fair amount. I plan on increasing my mileage by almost 100 miles, which I hope won’t be a problem. Between January and February of 2012 I only walked 10 total miles, so this shouldn’t be too hard to complete.
  3. I challenge myself to bike (either road bike or indoor cycling) 300 miles. I biked just over 200 in 2012, but I definitely picked up cycling much more the 2nd half of the year. This is something I’d like to make a bigger priority.
  4. I challenge myself to swim between 15 and 20 miles. I like swimming, but I don’t have easy access to a pool many months of the year. That being said, I think I can manage at least that many miles.
  5. I challenge myself to 250 minutes of planks. This past year I did 170 minutes of planks (not counting my pilates classes!). I unfortunately didn’t do any of my plank challenge from April- the middle of October, so this should be reasonably easy to achieve with a little dedication.
  6. I challenge myself to go through all the clothes I own. I get really attached to clothes (or memories associated with those clothes) so I have a hard time parting with them. While I’ve gotten rid of a few bags over the last few years, I’ve definitely brought in more clothes than I’ve let go of over the past 4 years. My drawers and closets are stuffed, and it’s time to clean them out!
  7. I challenge myself to finish the article I started in 2012. I started an article in September of 2012, and other more important or pressing writing and speaking projects came along and this article got pushed to the side. I would like to finish this at some point this year.
  8. I challenge myself to finish typing up all the letters from war. In 2012 I started to type up all the letters my grandpa sent home during World War II. These letters are fascinating, but they span almost 4 years, and he wrote at least weekly. That’s a lot of handwritten letters to type up! I plan to finish this in 2013!
  9. I challenge myself to write down what I’m thankful for at least one time each week. Thinking positively and living from a place of gratitude is something that I’ve tried to embrace in 2012, and I would like to continue to do this in 2013!
  10. I challenge myself to run 13 races this year. I’m a little hesitant on this one, knowing that I struggle with injuries. With these races I’m counting all running distances, both “in person” and virtual races, as well as any triathlons I might do.
  11. I challenge myself to read 12 books this year. I’m not sure I’ve read 12 books in one year in quite some time. I was given 5 books for Christmas, and I’m itching to read them. I desire to get back into reading, so I will try to read one book each month!
  12. I challenge myself to begin to write my book. Ok, this one is sort of a far fetched dream. I have this idea for a book and I would love to write it. I challenge myself to dream big and start to write this book that I’ve already formulated in my mind!
  13. I challenge myself to be present. (I wrote an entire post on this topic here). In high school and college I was always making count downs for the next big thing in my life. Somewhere along the way in college I learned that it’s really about the little things. The little things are what makes life beautiful, and I want to embrace them. I can’t do that if I’m only focused on “to dos” and the next big thing in my life. I want to be present and enjoy the times I have with my family and friends. I want to enjoy where I am at currently and notice the little things.

So there it is. 13 challenges for 2013. Some of these will likely be fairly easy to achieve, and I think some of these might come down to the wire. I tried to write challenges that would push me in a number of areas- physical, mental, relational, academically etc… Like I said, I of course plan on doing other things. I want to invent some new recipes, continue to each balanced meals (including dessert!), and having fun!

Here’s to a great 2013!

Now it’s your turn to share! Do you have any challenges for yourself in the coming year? What’s one thing you’d like to accomplish? Do you also struggle with staying present in life? 

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