Planning your race, making a pact and avoiding “guilt”

The title of this post is a mouthful and really this is more about my random opinion on a few different topics. The “inspiration” for this post is some of the discussion a group of us had at Progress after the workout this morning.

Team Rogue is now a little under four weeks from our race and many of us are starting to hone in on our race plans. Across the different groups I think Jim from Karen’s group and Charles from Steve’s are the two 3 hour folks going to CIM along with me. None of us have really run much together throughout the program so don’t really have a good appreciation for each others strengths and weaknesses so I think we’ll all have to make our own plans and stick with them. I haven’t quite decided what my approach is but hope to have a post on that in a week or so.

This makes me a little envious of the “3:10 train”, the great group of people that are all in the 3:10 range for their marathons that are part of Steve’s morning group. Having a consistent group to run with and then race with sounds like so much fun. When I trained for Boston 2006 Tracy S was also part of the performance project, we ended up training together and then ran the race together. Before the race both of us used a spreadsheet and came up with race plans independent of each other, and then compared and found some minor differences and then agreed to our plan. We ended up running most of the race to plan, together step by step till the hills, that’s where Tracy pulled away and then I caught him at the end of the hills and finished a minute ahead over all.

There are a few things I’m glad both of us did when we planned that race:

  1. We specifically laid out our plan and looked at it. Even though we’d both been training together and were doing the workouts lock step at times we didn’t take for granted that we’d run the race the same way. We made sure up front and discussed the course and our strategy and made sure we both even wanted to follow a similar one. It happen to be that we did but if we didn’t I think we both would have had different plans with a similar result, but still may have needed the different plans. The main thing for me was that we didn’t leave it to chance.
  2. We agreed on the what if’s before the race. What if one person feels like crap? What if one person feels good? What if the weather sucks? What if one person has to take a dump or some other delaying thing? Not that all these things will happen but going through the common things we know can come up was useful because when/if they did come up there was no second guessing it and there was no guilt involved. If one person feels bad, the other should go on, no waiting no guilt. I realize we may have done that anyway but discussing it and agreeing to it meant that it wasn’t a mental time bomb waiting to explode and screw with our race when/if it did come up.

I’m sure there are more things I could say but this is it for now. Have to ice my legs and hit the TP massage.

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3 comments

  1. Great post!! Thanks for sharing! Dee and I totally have this going for us and we’ve practiced it on long runs and races. It’s amazing how much we teeter totter. One day I’m feeling it, the next day she is. But what matters is whoever finishes first is always at the end to cheer the other on.

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