End of 2020

End of 2020

2020 has now come to the end. As in past years, it’s now time to review my goals from beginning of the year, and set up new goals for 2021.

The goals of 2020, ordered from the highest priority, are the following:

  1. to qualify for the World Trail Orienteering Championship (scheduled for 2020-11-08 to 2020-12-05 in Hong Kong) as a Hong Kong representative
  2. to remain in élite classes in sprint orienteering and trail orienteering in Hong Kong in 2021
  3. to complete my first running marathon
  4. to complete my first marathon swim of at least 16 km (10 miles), which at my current level should take at least 6 hours to complete
  5. to complete a running marathon (42.195 km) within 3:40 (pro-rata for longer races)
  6. to complete a swimming marathon (10 km) within 3:40 (pro-rata for longer races)
  7. to qualify for the cross-harbour race in Hong Kong in the racing category
  8. to learn a front-end web framework and make a useful website out of it
  9. to learn Swedish such that I can chat with locals when I visit Sweden / Finland for orienteering events

The top priority in 2020 for me was to do the World Trail Orienteering Championship. However, the race was cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic, therefore the goal has become invalid.

The second was to remain in élite classes in sprint orienteering and trail orienteering. However, due to COVID-19 pandemic, no races could take place in the whole of 2020 and the whole ranking series were cancelled. The orienteering association carried over the élites from 2020 and 2021, which meant I have achieved the goal trivially to remain in élite class in 2021.

After orienteering, the next thing for me to do was to do a running marathon. At the time I made the goal list, I had already signed up for a race in March. However, due to COVID-19 pandemic the race was cancelled, and no races could be held afterwards in the whole of 2020. Therefore I have not achieved this goal, and I still haven’t run a marathon by now.

The first goal in swimming was to do a marathon swim of at least 16 km. I signed up for a race in August, however the race was postponed to 2021 due to COVID-19 pandemic. I then arranged an independent 16 km swim in December which was going to be submitted for ratification, so I can say that I have achieved this.

The following 2 goals were related to my swim / run performance. For the running goal, I couldn’t even run a marathon so I haven’t achieved the goal. For the swimming goal, I came close in the race Cold Half, but just missed it by a narrow margin, and haven’t swum anything faster since then.

The goal to qualify for the cross-harbour race was because I really wanted to swim it before I go to a working holiday in 2021. However, the goal has become invalid as the race was cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic.

The final 2 goals were non-sport related. The first one was to learn a front-end web framework and make a useful website of it. The result was that I learnt TypeScript, Node.js, and made a web interface for KMB & LW ETA. However I didn’t make use a front-end web framework, so I still haven’t achieved it completely. The last goal was to learn Swedish, however I haven’t achieved it as I changed my mind to go to United Kingdom first instead of Sweden for working holiday, and further changed my mind to consider permanent emigration instead of a working holiday.

Out of 9 goals in 2020, 2 has become invalid so there are 7 remaining. However I have only done 2 of them. The reason that I didn’t achieve most of the remaining was because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It was the direct cause for me having not run a marathon yet, also it made me not able to train for swimming in my desired way so my 16 km swim in December went bad that I could not achieve my desired speed. As races cannot take place I don’t even have motivation to make websites related to them (my plan was to make a website kind of race calendar). The only goal that I haven’t achieved not because of COVID-19 pandemic is related to Swedish, because my mind changed because COVID-19 became a global pandemic.

Now, at the beginning of 2021, COVID-19 is still spreading around the world, and the epidemic situation in the United Kingdom is now at the most severe ever. There is no hope for it to be over as the vaccine has just been produced and still not in widespread circulation yet. I have no confidence to sign up anything which is far away now and will only sign up races which are coming soon. However, I still have some registrations which I made before the pandemic, including Vidösternsimmet last year which has been rolled over to this year, and I booked a slot to swim the English Channel this year, and now I even have trouble training for these.

I’m planning for emigration to the UK this April as I want to have a new life in a place with better climate, work life balance, and with lower cost of living. I’ll probably suspend all my goals which I haven’t achieved yet until the pandemic is over and I have a set date to complete them, apart from a limited selection below. The below are my goals which I hope I can complete in 2021, from the highest priority:

  1. to get a software developer job in a European city (geographically, not limited to the EU) and emigrate there
  2. to complete a swimming marathon (10 km) within 3:40 (pro-rata for longer races)
  3. to swim across the English Channel

I also have the following goals, some of them are those I haven’t achieved in 2020, but they are suspended until the pandemic is over:

  1. to complete my first running marathon
  2. to complete my first triathlon (swim-bike-run) of at least Olympic distance
  3. to complete a running marathon (42.195 km) within 3:40 (pro-rata for longer races)
  4. to learn a front-end web framework and make a useful website out of it

Now I have only set up 3 goals for myself in 2021 as I really don’t have motivation to do anything which is not certain. I hope that I can achieve them this year. However, my real hope is that the world can return to the good old days of 2019, when people could travel freely, when Hong Kong still had a functioning one-country-two-systems, when people in Hong Kong still enjoyed travelling to mainland China for entertainment, when there were running races every weekend, etc.

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