2017 Goals In Review

Those active readers will remember that I set out with some goals in mind for 2017.  They were reasonably ambitious and in the end, I have mixed results.  Some I hit, others I missed entirely, and yet others are somewhere in the middle.  I'm ok with this and don't see it as a failure.  I had a lot happen in the past year including both my partner and I starting new jobs, moving, and completing significant steps in my doctoral program.  So the fact that I upheld many of these goals at all made me quite happy.

Complete a Triathlon

 This did not happen.  I had trouble with getting into a training routine and then also scheduling it.  It was not the smartest idea to try for this during a year in which so much happened.

15000 a day

Nailed it!  Every day, I completed more than 15,000 steps a day.  Overall, this was a challenging goal for me and it augmented a lot of what I did in terms of working out.  I forwent a lot of bicycling or spin bikes because it wouldn't get me to the 15K and I only had so much time.  There were also a few days where I almost forgot and would be in bed about to go to sleep, only to remember I hadn't hit my daily goal.  In fact, this happened within a few days of the end of the year.  I laughed hard that I came so close to slipping up so close to the end of the year because I had that exact thought the day before.  But I didn't; I made it.  For the next year, I'm resetting it to just 10K a day so that I can get back to doing cycling and other non-step-oriented activities. 
A screenshot of my steps from my Garmin device.

15 more pounds

Yeah, this didn't happen.  In fact, in the last 2-3 months of the year, I added pounds back to my starting weight when I started Weight Watchers about 1.5 years ago.  Of course, that had a lot to do with my stress mood for the last quarter of the year as I tried to complete my qualifying paper.    I knew I was in the stress mindset and accepted that the weight gain would happen.  Of course, it didn't happen from lack of working out, I did that plenty (see above about 15K and below about running), but I was just eating everything in sight because I am, indeed, a stress eater.  In the new year, I am back to being more conscious with this. 

Stay on Target for Running

A screenshot of my running mileage from a garmin device.
I made it over 1000 miles and just under 1100 miles so this target was accomplished.  I had hoped for 1200, but I still did good.  I didn't do nearly as many races as I usually do, which was sad but I had remained consistent with my 5K in doing it under 25 minutes at one of the races, so I was happy.  One of the ways I managed this is that in moving to Watertown and living near the Charles River Bike Path, I have done a lot of running to and from work which is about 5.5 miles away.  That helped significantly in getting me over the 1000 mile mark. 

Complete the Book

This did not happen.  The doctoral program, to no one's surprise, meant that I was not able to dedicate the time needed to complete this. 

Less Mindlessness

I had waves where I did this effectively and other times, not so much.  I think that's the likely trajectory.  It's a moving target and there are times when it is certainly ok to not be entirely present.  So, I make progress but will continue to monitor. 

Focus on the Breath

 Like being less mindless, this one had times of success to help redirect or understand myself.  I found it most useful or successful when dealing with stress or tense interactions with others.  And while I did practice this when the problem was internal, it was not as useful (hence the weight gain and stress eating). 

Figure Out My Dissertation

Success--mostly.  I've got a strong direction that I want to go in and I like the topic I am thinking and writing about.  It took a bit of getting there with lots of different projects along the way.  But I've submitted my Qualifying Paper and am waiting to find out how it has been assessed and where to go next in the program. 

More Politically Active

I wavered on this, in large part because of the job change, the big deadlines for the doctoral program, the health goals, and trying to be a present partner.  But while I did not do as much as I would like, I did start to do things more consistently (contacting my representatives as well as other government officials about issues) and reflect on just what it means to be politically active for me and how I need to do it in a way that aligns with my beliefs.  So...baby steps.

Other Accomplishments

So while I had some hits and some misses for my goals for 2017.  I definitely achieved some other things to which I am excited about. 

Published Fiction

I published my first short-short story this year.  It was a bit of a one-off in that I saw the call and an idea sprang to mind.  In fact, I've gotten a few more short-short stories that I've written over the last year and have really enjoyed having the outlet and returning to fiction writing after so long apart.  

Professional Requests

I've also noticed an uptick in requests to present at different places this past year.  Usually, I'm putting in proposals for conferences but in the last year, I've had a few requests to present, which has been something new to get used to.  One such request was to present on hybrid flexible pedagogy at a conference for the South Carolina Technical Colleges in October.  


I've been blogging for about eight years and despite a very busy year as seen above, I have continued to blog.  I've appreciated the space to ramble and reflect and that I've been able to continue to do so for so long.  I've also had some great interactions with others outside the blog about the blog this year; people telling me they enjoy reading it or it's inspired them to blog.  

Less Driving

A screen shot of the mileage from biking according to my garmin device.
Since we moved to Watertown, my modes of transportation have changed significantly.  In fact, from July to December, I might have filled up my gas tank about 5 times.  That's it!  Starting August, I began biking and running to and from work.  I got a system worked out in terms of clothes, cleaning up, and food and such and now drive to work at most, once a week.  Otherwise, I run, walk, bike, or take the bus (or some version of all of them, some days).  This has been a great change for me.  I was helped in part because I can go along the Charles River pathway for much of my trip as well as through a cemetery, so I have some lovely natural views.  It's fascinating what a change of environment can do because when I lived in Beverly, I was not further from work when at NSCC but never established the discipline to make this a regular thing throughout the year.  

Daily Journal

Unexpectedly, I decided to start keeping a daily journal; just kind of an account of how my day went and what I did.  I started in June and pretty much kept up with it through the rest of the year.  I am continuing this into the new year and have appreciated spending a little part of each day, thinking about what I did the day before.  

So I didn't hit all my goals, to which I'm completely fine.  I had a really amazing and powerful year on so many levels and I see growth and development in many ways from last year, and in the end, that's the most we can ask for.  So here's to a great year of goals achieved and missed and life lived!  

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