No Category selected On race reports and lessons learned…

    On race reports and lessons learned…


    With a tendency towards achievement, and being goal-directed people, many runners set multiple race goals.  The “A goal” is what to shoot for if every little detail clicks perfectly into place.  The temperature and winds are just right, perfectly matching your selection of clothing.  Everything you ate sits well with you and your fuelling strategy perfectly meets your expenditures.  No one gets in your way at the start, stops short and takes you out, or throws anything that hits you.  Most importantly, your body co-operates perfectly:  no need for bathroom stops, no nagging injuries plaguing you, no cramping; no discomfort of any kind.

    A “B goal” would be one that is reasonable for you to reach in most cases barring anything going seriously wrong.  Some runners stop here.

    Then some of us set a “C goal” – depending on what’s been going on with a person, this may just be to make it to the finish line in one piece.

    With that in mind, race reports are certainly not like World Series headlines.  You can’t write two the night before, then choose one after the race.  Every time you line up at a starting line, you are setting yourself up for incredible elation, heart-wrenching defeat, or some degree in between; however it goes you are certainly set up for lessons learned if you choose to use them!

    Sometimes the lessons are about what you did right.  Sometimes they’re about something you could do differently next time.  Other times they are simply that you need to cut yourself some slack because not everything is within your control; this can be the hardest lesson of all.

    In case you’re wondering, I hit my B-goal from my half marathon yesterday and am quite pleased with that result.  I had a wonderful weekend overall, including good times with family and friends, some goodies from the expo, and a new Personal Best to savour.  I am also still analysing the experience and making sure I get the most out of the lessons I have the opportunity to learn.

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    A runner for just over four years, Karen has already completed a marathon, two half marathons and a variety of 5k and 10k races. She describes her first marathon - the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon last September - as "a nightmare." However, she met a very interesting person in the process - a man named Sydney who was running his 152nd marathon! Although the race didn't go as well as planned for Karen or Sydney, he showed her that no matter how experienced a runner you are, you can still have a bad day. "Does that mean we shouldn't bother to prepare, or maybe just shouldn't bother at all? Of course not!" says Karen. "In the end, it is what we make it." We like her optimism!