Goal cycle 3

Iain Smith

Iain Smith / October 25, 2020

7 min read

My calendar

Cycle 3 was from the 24th of August - the 4th of October. If you want to know more or catch up on the goal cycles, read here. From the previous cycle, I set the following goals:

🏆 Big Goals

Big GoalMeasureTracking
Improve my Strava fitness of 52Improvement of Strava fitnessincreased by 17
Learn about more about FlutterDo course Reso Coder course0 / 6 lessons

🏅 Habits / Small Goals

I am a runnerRun 4 times a week6 / 6 weeks
I am a runnerRun 600 miles in a year513 / 600 miles
I am a bloggerBlog once a week1 / 6 posts
I am a readerRead Happy by Derren Brown0 / 1 books
I am a learnerImprove my typing speed of 49 wpm59 wpm

🤔 Thoughts

😃 What went well?

I started using Roam to track and document all of my activities. First, I had to work out how to use it. Something you would think would be easy to understand with a note-taking tool. However, there are various different systems you can apply to the organisation of your notes in Roam. This involved watching multiple tutorials on how best to use the different approaches. The blog post from Nat Eliason is an excellent starting point. My experience with the tool has been positive. The benefit of creating a topic and linking all the places where I have referenced it is useful.

I am a runner

Coffee at guardswell farm

My Strava fitness level has increased to 69. I feel that the runs are getting more comfortable. My fitness level has increased due to running an extra half mile after each 5k and the odd 10k. This lead to me pushing myself, one weekend, to do a run-up Arthur's Seat (it's a big hill). The next cycle, I will be looking to include this route more often. The highest fitness level I have achieved was 83 when training for a half marathon. One of my goals for the next cycle is to match this level. Another goal this year is to complete 600 miles. I only have 87 miles to go - the more miles, the better!

Since starting the cycles, I have developed the habit of running 4 times a week. I am proud of this achievement as it's been 23 weeks. Only 3 more weeks and it will be half a year. This has been helped by the lovely spring/summer weather. However, winter is coming and may pose challenges in the next cycle. This has been my favourite habit, I have developed so far.

I am a reader

I set out to read the book Happy by Derren Brown but have only managed a couple of chapters. So I'm going to keep working on this book, aiming to read a couple more chapters in the next 6 weeks. I am going to set time aside for reading to make sure I can get this done.

I am a blogger

I set out to write a blog post each week, with one being more technical. I started with the technical post, which required a lot of research and investigation. This is where I have spent most of my time. I think I may have been too ambitious with the topic and could have split this into three or four posts. This is something I need to keep in mind when I write future blog posts; to know when to break them into smaller parts. In saying that I feel this particular post suits a single long post, but I'll let you be the judge once it is published. To add to this, I think my writing skills are improving the more I do this.

For the next cycle, I am going to set my sights lower and go for 3 posts as I managed that before, one will be this long technical post.

I am a learner

I set out to continue Reso Coder's Domain Driven Development course. I haven't managed to do any more, so I am still on number 11. I haven't spent much time on this goal due to spending all my time on writing and researching the larger blog post.

Another goal was to improve my typing speed - I am going to continue with this. I have improved a little but not a lot and doing a little each day seems to be making progress.

👷 What can I Improve?

I was a bit too ambitious in the number of goals I set my self this cycle. I got caught up in increasing the number of habits/goals from the last cycle. This has made me lose focus on my goals.

Next cycle, the plan is to go back to fewer goals and keep it simple. I also realised that this goal-setting is for me to improve; I shouldn't beat my self up if it hasn't entirely gone to plan. No one actual minds if I don't do them. I just need to not be dishearted and keep going learning from the past. Chin up Iain - you'll do better next time!

I also started using a different note-taking tool Roam. I aim to increase my use of this to track the goals and my weekly reviews. As I was doing with Trello in previous cycles.

I didn't find a suitable time to read and haven't made as much progress as I thought. I plan to make it a priority to form this habit so I will make reading a primary goal/habit.

🤩 Discoveries

From the last cycle, I said I would add a "Discoveries" section (the name is still a work in progress). In this section, I would add additional events that have happened.

I went on holiday to Guardswell Farm (see blog header image) and Taymouth Marina. It was very relaxing: a little bit of canoeing, a little bit of hot tubbing and a lot of relaxing.

I also went to a couple of events:

All of the talks were excellent. I have learned a lot. Adrian Mowat, was outstanding showing what he has achieved with Rust while in lockdown. Highlighting how fast, safe and performant it is. The performance examples comparing grep and ripgrep were exceptional, I love seeing the stats.

🔁 What do I want to do next?

As I have discussed:

  • I will continue my running but slightly tweak the goals to focus on fitness by increasing the running distance with some Arthur's Seat runs.
  • I am aiming to get most of the way through the book Happy by Derren Brown
  • I want to do more of the course I started from Reso Coder on Domain Driven Development.
  • I am going to do three blog posts, finishing the more extensive post I start this cycle.

I am going to start cycle 4 on the 26th of October, a little later than planned to gather my thoughts.

See you on the 7th of December for the end of cycle 4!

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