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A Look Back At Her Accomplishments This Year Will Motivate You

Have you started planning your race/event/goals calendar for 2017? I have and I’m super excited about what next year holds, but what about this year’s goals? I posted in February about my hopes and plans for 2016 and I thought I’d take a look back to see how I did.

Here were my SMART goals:

  1. Be able to do ONE unassisted pull-up by the end of August. Earlier would be better.
  2. Run a ten-minute mile by the end of May. I haven’t been able to run a 10-minute mile ever. In fact, my fastest mile was 10:34, and that was while playing varsity sports in high school.
  3. Plank for over a minute. Planks—nuff said.
  4. Complete a Tough Mudder event in early May and not look like a bumbling fool—well actually I don’t really mind looking crazy. I just want to finish!
  5. Run a 5:30 or better for the NYC Marathon this November.

Guess what? I only succeeded in fully accomplishing one of these things. Am I disappointed? Not in the least. Here’s why.


I’m still working on my pull-up game. I’m getting closer every single day. I’ve been at it for a few months now and one of these days it will happen. But you know what? My back, shoulders, and arms are significantly stronger because of it. So actually, I call that a win.

Ten-minute mile

I know what I need to do in order to achieve this, but it just didn’t happen this year. I had to contend with some nerve pain which prevented me from doing any speed work. Maybe it will happen next year. Maybe it won’t. I won’t perseverate about it because hey, I can still run marathons and ultras. So I’m good.


I can plank for way longer than I used to. I’m up to 50 seconds. Next year will be my year. Promise!

Tough Mudder

I did FOUR this year. As Coach T Mud said, I’m a Tough Mudder junkie. I did manage to look like a bumbling fool in each one though, and I’m totally OK with that.

5:30 at NYC Marathon

Nope. Because of the nerve pain, I was unable to do speed work and that greatly hampered even getting close to this goal. I can always dream though, right? Also, I got to run the New York City Marathon. Nuff said.

I had an excellent year. I was able to complete three marathons, one ultramarathon, two 25K races, a half marathon and four Tough Mudders.

Even though things didn’t go quite as planned, I was able to place all of my training and energy in an organized but flexible framework. I checked up on myself several times, and I made sure that I modified my goals as the year went by. Because of this, I was able to keep trucking despite the disappointment of not being able to achieve certain goals.

I grew, I became a stronger athlete, and I managed to maintain my sanity and integrity by not getting too put out by that which I couldn’t control. I’m pretty stoked about my year.

Fat Girl Running

Fat Girl Running

My name is Mirna Valerio, aka @TheMirnavator. I am a native of Brooklyn and current resident of northeast Georgia. I'm a Spanish teacher, diversity educator, cross-country coach, marathoner, ultrarunner and blogger, writing about all things running and living life to its fullest while being a larger gal on my blog, Fatgirlrunning. I have a son who is 12 and a hubby who travels a lot, mostly in West Africa. I try to live by example. We only have one body and one life. We must love our bodies and ultimately our entire selves in order to be whole people, in order to live our lives to the fullest. The road to self-acceptance and self-love is a long one, and one that requires a commitment to loving yourself (and spreading that love to others) no matter how you perceive yourself that moment, day, or year. Get out there and be. And run all the roads and trails.