I have never been a running races for fun kind of person but all of a sudden my next 3 races and 4 of my next 5 are all for fun. I am doing the Bakers Dozen Half on Saturday (this was the Hostess half last year where you have to eat sugary craziness at every aid station to get your medal, last year it was twinkies this year it seems like lots of cookies, I am going to run sub 2 because I think it will be funny to run a sub 2 at a race like this). Then next Saturday I am doing the Mayan End of Days 12.21 race, I signed up for this because I train with a lot with the people who put it on (they are members of the triathlon club that I do swims with) and they seem to have fun. It's a small race with 50 race cap, no frills just a medal and it's also a trail race. I have never run a trail race in my life so I don't know what to expect so I figured I would go out and have fun and see what the day brings as its my first trail race. I am then volunteering to pace the STG half in January, I wanted to do the race but really didn't want to pay to do it as I have been miserable the last 2 years doing it and my focus is triathlon training right now not racing and or running so I figure win win I will volunteer to pace and have fun and use it as a good training run. My friend is also volunteering and we got hooked up on the same time so it should be a blast, we are similar speeds. I will be trying to pr in a half in February as I loved the race last year and I want to see if I can pr on it. Then I volunteered to pace the Zion half in March because seriously nothing could be cooler than running through Zion national park. I even signed up for a pace almost 2 minutes slower than my pr so I could enjoy myself and the scenery (the 2:10 pacer is what I will be doing).
How do you handle races like that with your training? The 2 pacer races I know exactly what speed I will be running and both are close to my long run speeds but the other 2 throw me for a loop. I don't want to go out too hard and disrupt my training but still want to do well. Is there just a fine line between enjoying yourself but also pushing yourself a little in a race? Do you run a lot of races just for fun?
Also bonus question for those who pace or for those who run with pacers. Do you like your pacer to walk the water stations? I normally walk the water stations unless I am trying to pr then I run through about half of them or skip half of them. If you pace have you seen most people want to run or walk the water stations?
I look at how the race fits into my training run. If it would say work well for a tempo or a MP run I'll do them at that pace. If it's a longer race I may do it at a super easy pace. Depends on what I'm doing the rest of the week.
Never run, if you want to never run, don't start because you'll never stop.
ETA: for a 2:10 pace group I'd walk the water station. If someone want's to run it you will catch them soon enough.
I've signed up for a HM every month for the next few months. My goal HM isn't until March. The rest will just be used as training runs and for other goals.
I've only used a pacer once and they walked all of the fluid stops. I didn't bring my hand held bottle and so I just followed their lead. I'd have probably ran through those and walked the gatorade stops like I usually do if I did bring it.
Half Fanatic #3091 ~ Marathon debut: 11/16/13 Anthem Richmond Marathon
"Run from what’s comfortable. Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation. Be notorious." - Rumi
If 12/21 is the end of the world, you won't be doing anything next Saturday
Middle Distance Runner
I run all my races just for fun. I have enough t-shirts, don't want finishers medals, and the rest of the swag is usually junk, so I certainly don't run races for any of those things. Why else would one run a race unless they were good enough to win prize money? If I'm not out to push myself to see how fast I can run that day, then it's nice to keep pace with another runner or three and chat during the race. Great way to make new friends.
2013 Goals: Mile - 7:45 (SB 7:53.74); Run first ultra marathon (Sep 21)
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