Unfortunately, for the vast majority of us who want to try break out of the ordinary and attempt something extraordinary we have to do this knowing the challenges we face and very conscious of our own limitations. It is with this in mind that we need to think about how we take the outcome goals that we have set ourselves and take the next step in turning it into something practical upon which we can take action.
In 2013, I set myself two key goals:
- Win the Welsh Commonwealth Games trials; and
- Come in the top 25 in all 3 Bisley Majors: Grand Agg, St. George's and HM Queen's Prize
Beyond mere scores, I'd been thinking about other ways to improve. I'd done a serious amount of work on my technique, but I hadn't really done anything physical to help my shooting so I decided to add some performance goals relating to my cardiovascular fitness and injury resistance. The first of these might make some sense to you; however the injury-resistance might be giving you some difficulty. A couple of factors influenced me here: firstly the number of shooters I know who have serious back problems from years of abuse; and secondly, the serious muscle cramping I get between my spine and my right shoulder blade after several days of shooting, which I was sure was having a negative effect.
I now had a couple of solid outcome goals and some performance goals. I will:
- Average 49.5 or better at short range
- Average 47.5 or better at long range
- Make sure my kit is in top condition
- Improve my cardiovascular fitness
- Improve my injury-resistance
We're getting somewhere, we're still a ways from having a set of goals we can use to generate a training plan but by thinking about what we want to achieve in a broad sense, we're really just following good planning discipline: working out where we want to go and how to get there. Any good project manager will tell you that we also need to have answers to other questions: do we have enough time, money and other resources to get there? What's going to get in our way? And, how do we know we're making progress? More on these next time...