November seems to be the month where my personal goals get an accounting. It is also the month where things seem to fall apart. Two years ago I signed up for my first half marathon. It was a test for myself after losing twenty pounds that year. The weeks immediately leading up to the event, however, became ridiculously stressful at the day job, and the hours grew so great I could no longer train correctly. I never made the distance in training. Somehow, the last two weeks before the marathon calmed down enough and I was able to run the event, all thirteen plus miles. Mission accomplished.
Last year I signed up again. I wanted to challenge myself and beat my time. I also decided I should participate in NaNoWriMo. I had a couple of novels ready for their first draft and needed to just get them written. The same thing happened at the day job and this time it was worse. I worked eighteen hours a day, seven days a week for six weeks straight. I even worked the day of the marathon. There was no training for two months. I lost my entry fee, and I lost NaNoWirMo.
This past Monday I signed up for NaNoWriMo and today I signed up for the half marathon. Am I just hoping this year will be different? No. I’ve made some professional choices in my day job and made it clear I will never again go through what I experienced the last two years. I have turned down some opportunities but I’ve also regained some fitness and creative energy, which in turn has improved my life. Period.