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    Hey! I'm Beth - a 27 year old foodie living and working in the Washington, DC area who has lost almost 90 pounds through Weight Watchers. I love good food, wine and getting creative in the kitchen, and then balancing that out with running, The Shred, and yoga. Please feel free to browse around and hopefully you'll find some ideas, recipes and motivation!

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January Plans

“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”

I heard that quote a long time ago, and it’s really stuck with me – largely because I think it’s so true. The only time I ever accomplish a goal is when I have a plan, and I’m pretty sure that doesn’t make me unique. 🙂 So, in order to meet some of my Yearly Goals (I prefer calling them that rather than resolutions), I want to set some goals each month that will feed into them, as well as some other random goals/ideas that I’m sure will come up as I go along. Towards the end of 2010, I started setting weekly and monthly goals, and it really helped me stay on track. I think the reason those smaller goals work so well for me is because I can look at my schedule and what I have going on/when I’ll be traveling and adjust things accordingly.

Here are the goals I set for December and how I did with them.

December Exercise Goals:

  1. Strength training 2x a week, and add in ab work. – I was pretty good about strength training at least once a week, but there were a few weeks I didn’t get it in twice. I definitely did a lot more ab work than I normally do, so 3/4 of a check on this one. 🙂
  2. Try to do interval/tempo runs 1x a week. I have consistently done this, but mostly because I get too bored on the treadmill not to change-up the speed pretty often. 🙂
  3. Establish my training plan for the half marathon so I know when to start doing the long runs. Check. I’m following Hal Higdon’s Intermediate Plan with a few tweeks.
  4. Keep up working out 3-4x a week for the whole month. 3 out of 4 weeks I did this. The week I joined Weight Watchers (unexpectedly!) I only got in one workout, but other than that I’ve been good.

December Food Goals:

  1. Try to eat home as much as possible given the travel schedule and the amount of eating out I will be doing with all of the traveling. Goal met. I was really, really good about eating at home whenever I could.
  2. Stick to a $50 weekly budget for food. Nope. I think $50 is too strict for me for a weekly budget and especially because I love experimenting in the kitchen and trying out new recipes. My plan for 2011 is to up this to $75 a week.
  3. Drink a lot of water even during traveling. Check on this one. I tried to be really conscious of drinking enough water throughout the month.

December Personal Goals:

  1. Read at least 1 novel during the month. I read two! (this one and this one)
  2. Try to get 8 hours of sleep a night. Somehow I accomplished this one most of the time. I love my sleep!
  3. Try not to let the busyness of the month take away from all the quality time ahead with family. Check. Despite how busy I was, I had an awesome month and really enjoyed all the time away.

So, all in all, I did pretty well all things considered. I didn’t realize I would be joining Weight Watchers during December so I feel like that was a pretty big “accomplishment” (along with losing 7.2 lbs!). I’ve also gotten back into running pretty frequently, and actually did two five mile runs this weekend – one outside and one inside. I think that’s going to be really helpful to help kick off half marathon training.


Looking forward to January, here is what I have scheduled:

  • January 8th – My sister’s baby shower (in anticipation of Harper’s homecoming!!)
  • January 19th – 25th – Traveling to San Diego for work (btw – any readers/fellow bloggers from San Diego that want to do dinner??)

That list is a whole lot shorter than it was in November and December, and for that I am grateful.

Taking those into consideration, here are my goals for the month:

  1. Follow Hal Higdon’s Intermediate Half-Marathon training plan – focusing especially on working up to a 7 mile long weekend run and the speed training once a week. I will probably cut the plan down to running 3-4 times a week rather than 5 because I don’t want to get injured and I think my body prefers less than 5 days of running.
  2. Stretch. I am really, really bad about stretching after I run. I want to try to stretch my quads, hamstrings, hips, and calves after every run to help prevent injury and make me more flexible.
  3. The Shred. Do it once a week for the whole month of January. I never get as sore from free weights as I do from that, plus 20 minutes is really easy to squeeze in anytime.
  4. Go back to Bikram at least once. It’s been way too long.
  5. Get back in the 160s. Even 169.8 would be fine. I have 4.6 pounds to go (not counting tomorrow’s weigh in).
  6. Menu Planning. I fell out of the habit a bit, but I always do a lot better with budgeting as well as looking forward to dinners and being more organized when I do. The plan for this is to try to plan out most dinners during the week, and then the weekends are usually up in the air.
  7. Recipes. Post at least one step-by-step recipe per week – judging from the comments on the Yearly Goal Check post, this seems like a favorite part of my blog so I want to keep it up for you guys!
  8. Read at least one book. This should be easy since I’m already reading one and will be traveling and I tend to read a lot when flying (if I don’t fall asleep!).

Whew I think that’s plenty to set out to do in January! I almost kept going but then I told myself to get real. 😛

What about you? Are you a goal setter? Do you prefer weekly, monthly, or yearly goals? What’s something you hope to accomplish in the month of January?

56 Responses

  1. I’m definitely a goal-setter and a major planner. I have all kinds of goals and lists… monthly and weekly master lists. And then I make a daily list every morning.

    In January, I plan to grocery shop just once per week to help make sure I stay within my newly established budget.

  2. Awesome goals! I really appreciate that your goals are so specific, and that you always follow-up and share which ones you met.

    I’m a planner all the way–I write out a weekly “to-do” list in my planner each Monday. Anything that doesn’t get accomplished that week gets moved into next week’s “to-do” list 🙂

  3. Beth,

    I really admire the way you follow through on your goals every month! I agree, goals without specific plans tend not to ever happen. I think you’ve got some great goals for this month, and I’m looking forward to seeing more awesome step-by-step recipes =)

    • Thanks Katie! I almost didn’t want to check back in on them because I knew I wouldn’t meet them all but holding myself accountable is half the battle!

  4. I’m definitely a planner and a goal setter, I just have to actually do the planning!

    Was your $50/week grocery goal for one or two people? For the two of us plus plenty of leftovers, we spend…a lot. Like $75-100 a week. But I do try to get as much organic as financially possible, and shop at 2-3 different stores to get what I need. And we eat it! I HATE wasting food. So I’m ok with the spending.

    $75 definitely sounds like a more reasonable goal for someone who likes to experiment in the kitchen!

    • The weekly bill is mostly for me because my boyfriend only eats dinner at home 1-2 nights a week since he’s a chef. $50 was still tight though for breakfasts, lunches, and dinner since I rarely eat out!

  5. These are great goals and I love how organized you are! I agree that you definitely need a plan to accomplish your goals. I like to set monthly goals unless my months get really crazy, then I turn to weekly goals. Keep up the good work and Happy New Year!

  6. Good luck with the goals. Soon I’ll be starting my version of Hal Higdon’s plan for the half, too! Weee! He’s a genius…

  7. I like that a lot of your January goals are complimentary – menu planning and recipes go together so nicely. And I also like that they are positive goals, e.g. things you WILL do instead of things you WON’T do. I like those kind so much more.

  8. I love setting bite size weekly and monthly goals! I even wrote my two goals for the week on my tracker in the “This Week I Committ to…” – work out three times at least and track EVERYTHING ALL WEEK!

    I love that quote – because I LOVE a plan 🙂

  9. Great goals and they seem to flow and fit so effortlessly!!!

  10. I love all of your goals and your follow-up with them! I’m working on mine now for the month of January. I need to speed it up or it will be February before I know it!

  11. I think setting goals for all those time periods are a great idea! Weekly goals keep you motivated for the “right now” and the long-term goals keep you thinking of the future.

  12. I’m a terrible goal setter. I set goals, and then reset them…and then reset them again. Unfortunately I usually set goals and then forget about them, or put them off :/ My new goal is to be better about that 😉

    • Maybe start with short term goals like daily or weekly? That way you can’t really change them too much! Weekly goals is how I started and it definitely helps!

  13. You are an awesome goal-setter!!! I have to get better at that! A lot better 🙂

    • Thanks Marisa! It only makes it easier to meet them when I share them on my blog because once I write it down and share it, it helps me stay accountable!

  14. I do lots of different goals. I have yearly ones and then monthly ones. I sometimes will do weekly ones as well. It is just a way to keep me sharp and focused (cause I really need it!).

    I used to have problems with doing stretching as well, but then I made it my challenge to stretch at least 4 days a week. I can tell you that it made a big difference for my running and just my overall flexibility. I am keeping that up for sure.

    • I want to stretch after every run because I am really nervous about getting injured now that I’m incorporating speed training into my plan. I like the idea of 4x a week!

  15. Love this list of goals! You’re definitely inspirational! I’m definitely a goal setter, but as far as a planner… not so much. I’m more of a “fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants” kind of gal.

  16. […] Make weekly goals:  I read Beth‘s blog regularly and she is awesome at doing this!  I have noticed that setting short-term goals helps you really get ready for the long-term […]

  17. I prefer monthly goals and I am working on my own for January. I’m optimistic!

    • Yeah I like monthly goals the best, but I like doing the weekly ones because they help me reach the monthly ones. This month though I don’t think I’m really going to set weekly goals since my monthly goals divide right into weekly ones – like following Hal’s training plan, doing the shred, etc.

  18. I haven’t been setting any goals for a while but you have inspired me and I have now set down some goals for today. For instance: When I joined Weight Watchers on 12-9-2010 I bought the WW scale. My goal for today is to put the battery in and start using it rather than just having it sit there. … Thanks for all you’re doing Beth.

    • That’s awesome!! Daily goals are really good because I think they can really get you motivated. I have a regular food scale and I started using it once I joined WW again.

  19. I certainly like having a plan and the thought of breaking down big overall goals into smaller ones for each week/month whatever. I try to remember that each day counts, so its important to work towards things how you can each and every day.

  20. All great goals!!! January will be a god month for you 🙂


  21. that’s such a good quote! I love planning, and I know if I don’t, then you’re right, my goal is just a wish!!

  22. Great goals, Beth!
    Very doable 🙂
    You can do this, girl!

  23. Great goals!! I want to get back into yoga, too! As well as read a book- I want to read the Hunger Games!

  24. Hey Beth,
    I am new to making goals myself. This year I made a New Years Resolution to make some goals.

    I did make some yearly goals and will make little weekly goals to achieve.

    I like your idea of a monthly goal though, something bigger than a weekly goal and smaller than the yearly goal.

    • Yeah I feel like monthly ones are a really good medium ground because they’re not so immediate, but its fun to see how much you can accomplish each month.

  25. Ok you are awesome!! And setting monthly goals instead of yearly ones is a GREAT idea! I may have to steal that idea and do it myself!

  26. Your opening quote and the statement on the card are pretty much the best ever. I think they’re wonderful words to ring in the new year 🙂

  27. Those are GREAT goals!!!

    HAHA Love the picture, that’s too cute! I made a lot for this year, which I don’t normally do, I’m hoping I’ll stick to them! 😛

  28. I love to write goals for the year and then break them down month by month, it’s the little planner in me 🙂

  29. I love to make my goals for a new year and then break them down month by month, it’s the planner in me 🙂

  30. I am definitely a planner and a goal setter, but am still trying to identify a system that works best for me.

    You stay on top of your goal setting and analyzing so well! Very impressive!

  31. I’m so bad to have any set goals or plans. I just don’t want to let myself down! lol

    I did just join WW online so I am going try to follow the plan this month and see what happens…

  32. Love reading your goals! I think making goals regarding anything in your life is so helpful. You are doing so great meeting all your goals too!

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