Otis Resolved 2010

Last year at this time, I posted a sort of peremptory list of resolutions for the coming year. The way I see it, the top of the year is full of people resolving to do this and that. The gym will be packed for two or three weeks and everybody will be full of gusto. Me? I like to get it out of the way before the holidays.

First, let’s take a look at last year and see how we did…

#1: Lose 10% of my body weight by May 15–This was probably the least likely of the three to come in for me, and I did not meet the goal by May 15. That said, I did join a gym for the first time in my life and actually used it on a regular basis for most of the year. I ended up losing 10% of my body weight by October 15.

#2: Online poker moratorium–Last year, I found I was abusing my free time by screwing around playing online poker for non-meaningful money. The only way to quit for me was cold turkey. So, I did. the goal was to not play until I finished two major writing projects. I’d like to say I did well with this one, but in the end, neither project got finished and I resumed my online poker play during what I called at the time, “my summer vacation.” That vacation lasted until…well, a couple of days ago. No, I’m not proud.

#3: Boycott 2009–2009 saw our family resume its boycott of such restaurants as McDonalds, Red Lobster, and Ruby Tuesday. It was a multi-faceted goal aimed at eating better, denying big corporations our dollar in favor of local restaurants, and not paying good money for junk food disguised as family fare. I’m proud to say that during the whole of 2009, we ate at one of these restaurants…once. The stop at McDonalds for breakfast during a family road trip was a necessity that even my hard-headedness could not deny. That said, during the year, we found some new favorite locals joints and ate better on an order of magnitude I can’t even quantify.

* * *

Now, on to 2010.

  • Run a 5K–This feels ridiculous to even put in print. I hate running…because I’m exceptionally bad at it. I have bad knees, bad ankles, and 36 years of wear on my body. That said, my buddy Blood and I have been talking about getting up a team for the Mud Run. I’m not entirely sure I can get in shape for that in time, but I’d like to try. Either way, by this time next year, I want to have at least one 5K under my belt…not necessarily because I want to be a runner, but because it will keep me focused on making sure my body doesn’t break down. In 2009, I made a goal for myself and made a bet with my brother. Both of those things made it so I am a lot healthier than I have been in years. As I said to my brother a couple of weeks ago, I don’t really want to live to age 90, but if I have to, I want to be healthy enough to enjoy it. What’s more, this guy has been inspiring over the last year. So, a 5K by the end of 2010. I can do that, right?
  • Online poker moratorium Pt. 2–Well, we all know how well it worked the first time. I have a lot of excuses for why the writing projects didn’t get finished, but in the end, I basically just gave up. Now, starting January 1, there will be no hands of online poker until at least one of those two projects is finished and in the hands of an agent or editor. And this time, I mean it.
  • Branching out–As most of you know, I make a majority of my income from writing about poker. I don’t intend to stop that anytime soon. Still, I want to write about something else. Actually, several something-elses. No need to go into the details here, but my intention is to spend as much of my free time as I can working to sell my writing on other topics. I have a figure in mind for how much I’d like to earn on the side this year. It is…ambitious. Now I have to see if I have the drive to make it happen.
  • Maintain–This is probably the most important of all the above goals, and it’s so incredibly personal I have a hard time even writing about it. The short version is, I got my priorities straight in 2009. It took way too long to happen, but in the last year, I’ve spent a lot more time focusing on being a good dad, good husband, and good friend. Doing all of these things made me a happier person. I am healthier, happier, and more focused than I have been in my life. I’ve stumbled along the way a couple of times and I’m not proud about that, but I’ve come to terms with the fact I can’t be perfect. I try to remind myself daily what I wrote in a letter to my second son before he was born: “You live to be happy and make the people you love happy. You do what you have to do to achieve both goals and do it without hurting other people.” If I can keep living that way, it’s all going to be alright.And so, that’s that. That’s what I foresee for 2010. If I achieve half of it, I’ll be overjoyed. If I do it all, then you’re going to have a hard time dealing with me in 2011.

Brad Willis

Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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5 Responses

  1. Special K says:

    Let me know about the 5k you choose. I’ll come down and run with you if I can. Dr. K might just join us, too. Good luck with the running.

  2. Drizztdj says:

    I run at least two 5K races with my wife every year. As a “non-runner” I shoot for 28 minutes. If you have a “blubber” run I highly suggest those.


    Beer and running should always go together 😀

  3. pokerpeaker says:

    Need a training plan for that 5k? You know where to find me. I”m happy to help.

  4. Sandra says:

    I ran my first 5K back in August and I used the “Couch Potato to 5K” running plan and it worked. I suggest you try it. It is great for us non runners. You can google it.

  5. Su says:

    The 5K is a great goal and is so doable. I highly recommend it. I would love to come do it with you. Let me know when and where – maybe I’ll make SC my “trip to see friends” this year.

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