I have many goals. Without them I’m lost. They give my motivation and inspiration to train almost every day.
I group them into three categories: qualify, time and place. Goals are linked together for obvious reasons. If I make a goal qualification with a goal time and earn a goal place, then I actually check off three goals. Lucky me!
A dream is just a dream.
A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline.
Quality for Ironman World Championship
The number one goal for all Ironman triathletes out there is also mine. It will happen, if not in age group 35-39, then in the next to come, or the next, or the next. My realistic goal since a few years back has been to qualify when I’m moving up to age group 40-44, that is in 2015.
Sub 10-hour Ironman
For my first Ironman (Ironman Kalmar 2012) I set a high goal of going under 10 hours. It being my first full distance Ironman race I was not sure what to expect. I made it with a few minutes to spare, having surprised myself with a very strong bike of 5 hours but a disappointing run. But I realized for the first time what it feels like running a marathon after a 180 k bike ride. It’s very hard, especially if you don’t get the nutrition just right.
Sub 9-hour Ironman
This goal is linked to qualifying for the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. It may be a bit far-fetched and borderline being merely a dream opposed to a realistic goal (you must have those as well), but going under 9 hours would almost guarantee a slot in Kona in any race worldwide in my age group.
1st place in age group
Obviously coming first is a goal, and a fairly realistic one in my age group looking at my records. This goal is also linked to other goals, such as overall place and qualifying.
2nd place in age group
I placed second at a half ironman distance race (Sövde Triathlon 2013). The podium spot took me by surprise because I was not having a great day. I really struggled on the bike mainly due that the race was in the early season and just three weeks after a sub 3-hour marathon performance that left me pretty stiff.
3rd place in age group
I’m not going to aim for a third place, obviously, but having this goal I inspire myself to keep going even if I’m having a bad day, to never give up. It’s just as rewarding to turn a bad day into a good one as having an great day all along.
1st place overall
I won Tylösand Aquathlon overall in the longest discipline. This is not a triathlon race but I still value this win due to the circumstances.
2nd place overall
Still not the first loser.
3rd place overall
I have come 3rd twice in Malmö triathlon, one of my favorite races.
Sub 3-hour marathon
I have been a decent runner most of my life, but in 2012 I decided to step it up and set a goal of going under 3 hours in Copenhagen Marathon 2013. I made it with a few minutes to spare. Now I would really like to repeat that in an Ironman race, but that is more of a dream than a realistic goal.
If going under 3 hours in a marathon was my toughest run challenge 2013, in 2014 it will be hitting 35 minutes on a fast 10 k course. Two very different challenges with different purposes. 2014 is all about speed and this goal will keep me focused on that.
Sub 1:20 half marathon
Nail this one at my first attempt early in the 2014 season with a comfortable steady pace of 3:45 km/min. I also ran under 1:20 2016.