Should You Set A New Year’s Resolution?

Written By Jamie Sparks

Jamie is one of the Ultra X Co-Founders. He enjoys rambling on about a variety of topics; motorbikes, cycling, adventure, and, of course, ultra running.

29 December 2018


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Reading Time: 4 minutes

As the calendar flips to January the first conversations inevitably turn to New Year’s resolutions. Many of these promises will revolve around health and fitness in the coming year; to exercise more, eat better, increase productivity and maybe even sign up to a race or challenge.

According to Business Insider, 80% are broken by the second week of February. So why bother?

Unless you have goals, you will likely not reach your potential or end up where you want to be. Why? Because unless you know where you want to end up you’ll never be able to take the necessary steps to make it happen and hence you won’t achieve your enormous potential. Make your goals clear and then break them down into sub goals (monthly) and then smaller sub goals (your daily routine).

To have New Year’s resolutions which work they must be specific. Some examples of goals that will not work include: ‘lose weight’, ‘gain more knowledge’ or ‘practice mindfulness’. These are too broad and as a result are very tough to measure. Instead they should read: ‘exercise (e.g. run/cycle/swim) 4 x a week for 45 minutes’, or ‘read one book a month’ and lastly, ‘use the app Headspace for 5-15 minutes daily after I brush my teeth in the morning’.

As these goals are specific and measurable, they are easier to follow and achieve. If in doubt, tell people these goals, make them public and you’ll find yourself being forced to stick to them because people will naturally ask you how they are going. On the flip side, you end up looking like a donkey if you don’t stick to them!

As such, we at Ultra X are sharing our goals for the New Year, and we encourage you to do the same.

Our goals

The Company: Ultra X

  • Have 250 Ultra X participants in 2019 – spread across our Sri Lanka, Jordan and Mexico races, as well as other events.
  • Continue to engage with our epic and fast growing community by setting a further three challenges (similar to #Holiday100) and events, outside of our races, over the course of the year.
  • Make every race better than the last in a bid to provide #theultraXperience;
    • We will endeavor to understand our competitor’s variety of needs. We will strive for feedback and look to tailor everything about our events to make the competitors experience the best possible one.
  • Look after our planet;
    • Our events bring people to untouched parts of the world. We will constantly strive to make as little impact on the environment as possible and consider this in all decision making.
    • Ultra X Mexico will forego plastic bottles and we are aiming to eliminate plastic from all of our events by 2021.
  • Create world class content;
    • We want to provide the platform for you to tell your incredible stories. In 2019, all Ultra X events will have a film crew, a minimum of two professional photographers and a dedicated media team.

The Founders: Jamie and Sam

Jamie and Sam are going to be competing in weekly challenges throughout the year. If either fails in the challenge they will be donating to a prize pot to be shared with the community at the end of the year. The first week of 2019 involves cold water swimming. We invite you to join us on these challenges.

Sam will be running UTMB in August aiming for a top 100 finish, wants to clock a 1:20 half marathon, learn to cook the perfect souffle, trial the ketogenic diet for at least a month (out of curiosity mainly) and commit to getting more sleep, averaging at least seven hours a night each week.

Jamie is looking to meditate daily (with the Headspace app), clock 50km per week on foot, read one book per month, complete 100 press-ups every single day and learn what double entry bookkeeping is.

We cannot wait to see what the New Year will bring, we have lots of exciting trips lined up, various events to share with the world and even more challenges to keep you lot honest!

Until then.

“Before it was working hard, then it was working smart, now it’s all about results.”


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