2011 in review …

As I started out to write my “2011 in review” post, the first thing I did was do the final updates on my 2011 Training Summary and 2011 Goals pages. Two things are obvious, it was a very poor running year, a reasonable cycling year, but I failed to achieve more of my goals than in any other year since I’ve been setting them here.

But, before I start whinging and making excuses for that, let’s get real and face the facts. We have things pretty good. When you think about some of the events of 2011, like the earthquakes in New Zealand, the tsunami and nuclear crisis in Japan, all the countries that are feeling civil unrest and severe financial crisis, and even the flooding that hit multiple parts of Australia – you have to say thank-you for keeping us safe. When I look around at other friends who have serious illnesses, first I pray for them to get well, and say another thank-you for keeping my family and most of my friends healthy this year.

Looking at my 2011 goals, I’m happy that I’ve managed to maintain my weight goal, but it has been a close thing on a few occasions, particularly at the end of the year.

When you look at the graph above and think back to the activities through the year, the reasons for the big dip in weight in February, lasting through March, April and May before slowly creeping up to the end of the year, the reasons are blindingly obvious. In February I participated in Febfast (no alcohol for the month), started eating better (using Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint principles) and also began some running training, first for R4TK, and then a half-marathon training plan with Alex (which was aborted due to injury).

Since then, I’m back to probably drinking too much, the primal eating plan has slipped and the running has been very rare. So, like I said the graph is easily explained.

So, I succeeded in precisely none of my running goals and despite the fact that I rode more kilometres than I ever have before, and successfully completed my biggest cycling goal (the virtual Tour de France), I also missed most of my cycling goals too. From a biking point of view, the Great Ocean Otway Classic ride was again my highlight, along with the purchase of a new mountain bike. Of course, Cadel Evans winning the Tour de France, and going into Federation Square to “Yell for Cadel” were also highlights.

It has been another exceedingly tough and stressful year work-wise, but I really don’t want to dwell on that.

From a family perspective, both my kids made me very proud by gaining qualifications in their respective careers – Chris finishing his plumbing apprenticeship as well as getting some other related qualifications, and Kate graduating as a primary school teacher. It was a year where I also realised I was letting my work stresses affect other members of the family too much – something I still need to try harder with.

The other thing that struck me as I reviewed the year was that I seem to have been dealing with my “tough year” in two ways. Firstly, as previously stated, by drinking copious amounts of beer and red wine, and secondly by “shopping therapy” and being a typical “guy” getting myself a swag of new electronic gadgets;

  • we finally entered the digital era, purchasing our first LED flatscreen TV in January
  • I finally realised that Apple Mac was the right technology direction, and that I’d been struggling with Microsoft Windows for far too long, purchasing a new iMac in January and an Mac Airbook in August
  • I bought myself a digital SLR in April (Canon EOS 60D)
  • I was very kindly given a Compex Performance electronic muscle stimulator  in May
  • A new Saeco/Lavazza pod coffee machine in August has been very well used
  • The Amazon Kindle purchased in September has really encouraged me back into reading
  • The Bose QC15 noise-cancelling headphones bought during my business trip in November will certainly make air travel much more bearable

So, like I said dealing with a tough year by “shopping for gadgets” (and alcohol) seems to have been my coping mechanism.

Installing the new water tank (with lots of help from Chris) was probably the greatest home improvement for the year, along with finishing the outside painting (which had taken most of the preceding year).

Jury duty in March was a disappointment as I was a reject (not selected for service).

Geelong were premiers again, which was a real highlight, especially as they beat Collingwood.

Other favourites for the year were;

  • Books – The “Songs of Fire and Ice” series by George R. R. Martin
  • TV Shows – Modern Family, Outnumbered and Game of Thrones
  • DVDs – Silent Witness
  • Movie – Red Dog
  • Music – Honorable mentions to Clare Reynolds and The Jezabels, but my favourites this year were the new live Pink Floyd tracks on the “Discovery Editions” of Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here that Chris bought me.

However, as I finish this review, and wish you all a very safe, healthy and happy New Year, I want to highlight the one post of mine for 2011 that resonated with me as I reviewed 2011 today. It was this one, from September 28th, The Optimists Creed. I posted this, but really didn’t take it to heart, or practise what I posted. I think I need to print it out and stick it on the wall, especially at work.

I still can’t decide on what my 2012 goals will be, more on that in a couple of days I think.

In the meantime, thank you so much for reading and for your comments, and again, have a safe, healthy and happy new year.

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7 Responses to “2011 in review …”

  1. Carla Says:

    Great review Andrew!

    All the best to you and your family in the new year!!!

  2. Ewen Says:

    Thanks Andrew. I’ve enjoyed reading your blog. All the best with whatever goals you decide on for 2012. Hope some running is amongst them. Can relate to the work stress problem — that’s one I need to solve for myself.

  3. Bill James-Wallace Says:

    Hi Mate, a great 2011 and lots of achievements. Here’s to an even better 2012 for you and yours. (The FBH thinks it’s kind of weird how alike we are … ;))

  4. sassydrcil Says:

    Here is to another year, Andrew!

  5. Twocatz Says:

    Great review. Whatever your goals are for 2012 I am sure you will achieve them I think we all have periods in our training journals where the wheels wobble a little. The key is that you have spotted the patterns early.

  6. oldgirlnewtricks Says:

    I think you are very diligant and admire you for that. Your posts are always interesting and I know you’ll meet your new goals in 2012.

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