Year 41 Master Plan – Still Evolving but Getting There

Last week, I wrote about making some goals for my 41st year, which will start on St. Patrick’s day.  My 40th birthday is coming up, and quickly – I can’t believe it.

I’m not particularly happy about turning 40.

When I turned 30, it was a big deal – I was pumped up about it and truly excited!  I felt like I was a true grown-up, which is crazy considering I was still single, living on a great income for just me, volunteering my time when I wasn’t partying and living it up, and sleeping in on the weekends.  I was hardly a bona fide grown-up.  I was a fiscally responsible party girl with no perspective on marriage and kids and real problems beyond having lost my job at the age of 24 during the Enron/Arthur Andersen debacle.

The last time I was down about my birthday, and getting older in general, was when I turned 25 and I hadn’t met any of the arbitrary goals I’d set for myself when I was naively 19 years old and a freshman in college.  For some crazy reason, I had set my goals at being married, having a child or two, owning a house, and loving my job.  When I turned 25 (my god, that sounds so young now, because it IS), I was chronically single, I obviously had no children, I was renting an apartment (but an AWESOME apartment on Wacker and Michigan Avenue in Chicago, so that was not getting me down!), and I was not happy with my job.  I learned on St. Patrick’s Day, 2001, as I cried to my best friend with tears falling into my horrendous draft American beer, that I would never, NEVER, make stupid arbitrary goals again for another birthday.


So here I am, turning 40, and I have not set any insane, arbitrary goals for this birthday.  I am the complete opposite of that 25 year-old girl from 2001 – I am very happily married (he was so worth the wait), I have two fabulous boys (so worth the agony and years of trying to have them), we own a home that we really love, and I mostly love my job (my job is staying home with my boys)!  I don’t know what kinds of arbitrary goals I could have set for turning 40, but I don’t think they’d have included being a stay-at-home mom at the peak of her health and fitness, that’s for sure!

Now that I am where I am, I think it’s time to set some goals for just the next year.  We’ve really eased into a good place with the kids – they’re both in school 3-4 mornings a week, they will both attend summer day camp every-other-week in the mornings, my husband and I can travel without the kids, we go out on dates without the kids and without feeling guilty about it, and we can communicate with both of the boys very clearly which just makes life easier!  In regards to “us,” we really like each other and are in love, and cannot imagine having someone else for our best friends.  In regards to “me,” I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been and I can physically do anything I set my mind to with a bit of training and focus.  Life is good, it’s stable, it’s happy.

So I shouldn’t be dreading turning 40, but I am.  I’m just being honest here.  “I’m 40” sounds so old.  I know it’s not really that old, but is just sounds so old.

I need to do something to get excited about my 41st year.

So, I’ve been thinking about my goals.  I’ve been thinking long and hard about them.  I’ve already set my fitness goals and calendar through July 23rd –  After that, the goals are high-level.  But this goes beyond fitness, it goes WAY beyond fitness because there’s more to me than being fit and strong.

Here are my goals so far for my 41st Year:

  • Fitness (notice goals are not specific to weight and body fat percentages until after the holidays because I just don’t think those are helping me at this point)
    • March 2 – April 30:  Strength Training and Running Preparation
      • 4 Weeks of Chisel Workouts
      • 4 Weeks of Hammer Workouts
      • Get average mile per run to 4-5 miles with ease (I think I’m almost there now, but I won’t be sure until I can get outside to run)
    • May 1 – July 23: Half Marathon Training
      • Finish half marathon in Colorado with a 9:50 average pace (slower due to the altitude)
      • Will do strength training twice a week and stretching once a week
    • July 27 – October 4:  Well Rounded Training with Strength, Cardio, and Stretching
      • Keep Running
      • Refocus on strength
      • Commit to 60% of BOD’s Workout of the Day
    • October 5 – November 22: Strength Training
      • 6 Weeks of Hammer and Chisel
    • November 23 – January 3: Maintaining Weight Through the Holidays – Lots of Cardio
      • Don’t exceed XX pounds
      • Don’t exceed XX% body fat
    • January 4 – March 17:  Prepare for Running Season
      • Return average mileage to 3-5 miles per run
      • Lengthen muscles
      • Trim to XX pounds and XX body fat
  • Marriage
    • Commit to two trips without the kids – even if just weekend trips
    • Go out on date night at least once a month, but shooting for twice a month
    • Spend time together reading or playing games – reduce TV time
    • More hot tub time
  • Parenting
    • Ease up, woman, and stop yelling
    • Fun Fridays now that both boys will be with me on Fridays and in school M-W (and Thursday for my big kid)
    • Workout when the boys are in school so that I can spend my little guy’s nap time with my big kid playing games or doing crafts
    • Spend alone time with my big kid every weekend
  • Reading
    • Read at least one book per month
  • Arts – Expand craft/artistic skills
    • Keep painting!
    • Metal working class to make a ring for myself
    • Glass blowing class to make Christmas ornaments
    • Halloween decorative letters
    • Christmas decorative letters
  • Culinary – Take at least 4 culinary classes during the year
    • Southeast Asian cooking
    • Libations class
    • Appetizers class
    • Holiday cookies class
    • Cake decorating course – buttercream, perhaps?
  • Seasonal – Take advantage of the fun things to do in the area
    • Spring
      • Weekend trip with kids
      • Getaway with my husband
    •  Summer
      • Berry picking
      • Full summer camp schedule for both boys – their fun is the priority
      • Lots of pool time
      • Family trip
    • Fall
      • Apple picking
      • Pumpkin patches (Omaha and local)
      • Farm Halloween
      • Corn maze
      • Haunted forest – are the kids ready?
      • Getaway with my husband
    • Winter
      • Advent activities, but not as lofty as this year’s plan (good God)
      • Snow shoeing
      • Actually take the kids sledding and not leaving it all up to my husband

I expect these to change a bit as I keep thinking about it, but I think this is a good start.  I think doing these things, focusing on my husband, kids, and health, should make my 41st year the best one yet.  At least, I hope it does!  🙂



4 thoughts on “Year 41 Master Plan – Still Evolving but Getting There

  1. May 1 is when I start training for the half as well. 🙂 I love your plans and think they’re super well thought out and attainable. I’m excited to see what this next year has in store for us!


  2. Great goals Courtney!! I like that you didn’t put things on the list that will be really really hard to accomplish but you still put plenty of things that will take hard work and dedication. You’ve got this!! 🙂


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