The first personal goal I set for 2020 was to walk/run 75 miles in January.

My son subscribes to Menlo Club, a men’s monthly clothing subscription service. In December he casually mentioned to me they were offering a challenge to their customers. Any who ran/walked 75 miles (#75milechallenge) in January and submitted proof of doing so would receive a free bonus shirt. It wasn’t so much the clothing that intrigued me, but the 75 miles sure did. I couldn’t get the thought out of my head.

So, I decided to go for it. Not to submit my results to Menlo Club, but for my own personal achievement, for my personal health, and to kick off 2020 in an ambitious way.

This goal may not seem like much to some, but for me it was enormous. Especially considering I hadn’t been running, let alone walking, consistently since the summer months. Adding on the reality that winters in Iowa aren’t conducive to my preferred means of exercising outside. Not to mention the fact that I hadn’t ran or walked 75 miles in any month ever in my life!!!

Yes, this goal of walking/running 75 miles in a month was beyond me.

But, I knew I had to try. I knew I needed to jump-start the year in a positive way. I knew it was time to take charge of my my health again. And I knew I needed show myself I could set a goal and work on achieving it.

I made my plan, mapped it out, and began on our treadmill on January 1. For six days a week I clocked three miles each day. Some days I walked, most days I did a combination of walking and running. Over time I was able to increase my speed and my stamina, and some days I even pushed beyond what I thought I could do. Each time I ended up a sweaty mess as our treadmill displayed I burned 650-750 calories in those three miles.

I’m excited to announce I crossed the finish line this morning as I wrapped up the last three miles of my goal!!!

I can’t believe I completed 75 miles in one month!

So, I’m sharing today what I learned.

What I Learned Walking/Running 75 Miles This Month

What I Learned Walking/Running 75 Miles This Month

It’s important to track progress.

I began the month using my month-at-a-glance page in my planner with writing 75 miles on the January 1 space. Each day I subtracted the completed miles, then wrote the new total. I knew exactly how many miles I had left each day. Tracking my progress this way helped me immensely! Doing so kept me focused on my goal and also on my progress.

It helped to tell others.

I shared my goal with those closest to me. I knew I would need their encouragement and love, especially on the days I felt like giving up. (Those days were many.) Also, every day on my Instagram story I documented my progress sharing how many miles I completed and how many more remained. My loved ones and my Instagram community kept me accountable!

I can do more than I thought I could.

On January 1 I really wanted to complete this goal to show myself I could do it. Sadly, it had been awhile since I set and accomplished a goal. (More on that next time.) Every mile I crossed off reminded me that I can do more than I think I can. Not in my strength, necessarily, but in God’s. Philippians 4:13 became my mantra and prayer.

Take it one day at a time.

I’ve been known to set a huge goal and not do anything to make it happen. I can get paralyzed by huge goals. Knowing this about myself, I realized I needed to focus on one day at a time. Walking/running 3 miles in a day sounds a lot more achievable than 75 miles in a month. Taking it one day at a time made all the difference for me.

Early morning exercise worked better for my schedule.

Even though I enjoy unrushed mornings with my coffee and Bible, I found exercising in the mornings worked better for me. I set my alarm earlier (5 a.m. – yikes!) and got on the treadmill right away. After my workout, stretching, and my shower, I was then able to enjoy my unrushed coffee and Bible time. This may not work for some, but it worked well for me.

So, now what?

Now that I achieved my January goal, what do I do now? My Mary Kay training taught me to set my next goal before I achieve the goal I’m working on. Now that I’m feeling stronger in my health, I desire to return to the weight training and cardio program I used years ago called Body for Life. So, my goal for February is to do a combination of weights and cardio 25 out of the 29 days. I’ll keep you posted on my progress through my IG stories!

Friend, do you set monthly goals for yourself? I haven’t for years, but I’m reminded I like how a monthly goal makes a yearly goal seem smaller. If you do, do you have a goal set for February? I’d love to read about it below in the comments. Can we cheer one another on?

Thanks for sharing in my joy today. I sure do appreciate you!

Blessings!

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