2022 Training Goals

As I like to do each year, I thought it would be a good time to set some general training goals for the year.  I like to do this as I am a “To-Do List” kind of guy.  I also tend to find it interesting how I veer off course each year.  As a teacher, I should really do a better job of setting manageable objectives geared toward specific goals, but as I approach a decade on the training band-wagon (and a half-century of life on Earth), I am less and less motivated to do so.  Nevertheless, I have not yet completely lost interest in training and bettering myself in the self-defense world, so here’s what I have planned so far.

Formal Training

Last year I focused almost exclusively in non-firearms training, with a strong focus on unarmed/minimally armed combatives.  Personally, I felt that, given my lack of prior training in these areas, I had a pretty strong showing.  Especially for a diminutive, not-very-athletic, rapidly aging guy.  I must say that, in addition to the gains I made, I also had FUN!  I can see why so many find the unarmed combative arts so addictive.  Accordingly, I will continue to explore these areas this year.  I have already signed up for two such classes (though I already had to bail out of one due to my nose not being fully healed from a class last year…..I’ve bumped to a different course later in the year), but I may still add two more (or perhaps even more!). 

I also plan to continue my love affair with scenario-based, force-on-force training.  Until the training community fully embraces (and tech companies fully develop) virtual reality training (which I believe will represent the future of scenario-based training), force-on-force classes remain the closest thing to reality for normal Earth people.  So I expect to find my way to at least one such course, either as a student or possibly even as a dedicated role player.  We shall see.  But I will reiterate, as I wrote last year, that this type of training is something that all concealed carry practitioners should avail themselves of.

That is really all I have planned.  I am done with “certificate hunting”, standing in lines shooting drills.  With the amount of training I have had up until now, I can do that pretty well on my own.  There may be times when I want to brush up on my skills (as I did last year with this class), but, even looking back at AARs I wrote in 2015, I always wanted to be more tactics/movement/scenario-based than just standing in lines, shooting at targets together.


I shot in seven matches in 2020 and six in 2021.  I hope to at least match my 2021 number this year.  I find matches to be invaluable as practice/testing sessions.  My skills with a handgun began to measurably and quickly improve when I began shooting matches in 2016.  I see no reason to give that up.  Six IDPA matches would equal less than a case of ammo fired (I typically shoot about 100 rounds per match), and I have plenty stocked up.

Informal Practice

The training group of which I am a member (which is primarily made of current and former military/law enforcement/intelligence officers continues to meet monthly, weather be damned.  I only miss these sessions due to family travel or to classes that happen to fall on the same days.  I plan to continue with this group, as we are starting to be a bit more formal with skills development month-to-month. 


Personal fitness remains, in my opinion, the most important thing a person can do to better him or herself in all facets of life, but particularly when it comes to self-defense.  I have been doing really well with this of late.  The purchase of a replacement—and better—stationary bicycle that my wife and I share has been a welcome addition to our “gear”, and I have been making regular use of it.  (Riding the stationary bike is also a great time to watch training DVDs to review skills!)  I plan to continue with my personal regimen throughout the year, with informal goals to lose about 8 more pounds (I’m down about 6 right now), increase my cardio endurance (this was found wanting in a few classes in 2021), and improve strength and power.  I would like to enter the next decade of my life without anyone saying that I have a “dad bod”.  It also really helps with concealing a handgun.


I have not bought a firearm since 2018, nor much in the way of gear.  Frankly, I am proud of that.  I’m sick of chasing performance (and fads) by throwing money at guns and gear.  I love guns, and with more substantial resources I would own many more.  But for me, firearms almost exclusively fill utilitarian roles.  Commonality of sights/triggers/platforms (something else I more or less standardized for myself back in 2016) have also helped contribute to improvements I made in performance. 

Having said that, I expect that I will buy one firearm in 2022 (and sell one as well).  We shall see.


I have been focused much more on reading this year rather than writing.  I made seventeen posts in 2021 on this blog.  While it is possible that I can equal or better that number, at this moment I find that….unlikely.  Sorry, just being honest.  But you never know….

Final Thoughts

That’s really about it.

What do you have planned for the year?  I recommend getting SOMETHING down on paper.  It helps.

As always, thanks for reading.  Please share your thoughts below, as we always welcome civil discourse.

4 thoughts on “2022 Training Goals

  1. Outstanding goals and common sense philosophy. I am trying to to purge my equipment and focus on the fundamentals.


    1. Rob,

      Thanks. I do believe this is the way. I update some gear as needed (updating lights when WAY better stuff becomes available, for example), but otherwise I think I’m done.

      Good luck to you on your path!



  2. I definitely want to get back in the competition realm, been a long time since I shot a match. I find matches higher pressure than force on force, and I think it is equally as valuable for getting used to shooting and thinking under some stress. I tell guys that if they have taken a few solid classes, shoot a competition match: that will teach them more about themselves as a shooter than another five classes will.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Salvatore,

      Thanks for the comment, and fun seeing you and Kelly on that podcast the other night. For some odd reason I never feel much pressure at matches. Perhaps it’s because I generally show up solo and just shoot the match without a bunch of friends watching (?). So I always feel much more pressure in FoF training. Weird!

      Contact me anytime at civiliangunfighter.robert@gmail.com



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