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Brand new PR.... or was it? (Read 559 times)


On On

    The local Turkey Trot had quite a few PRs this past week.  Many runners are talking about their time and actually comparing garmin data etc.  This is not an argument for or against using gps units to measure a course but the over all feeling if the course was short.

     

    • Does this matter?
    • Is this a new PR
    • Did you get the experience you paid for? 
    • Would it matter more or less if the course measured long?

     

    My two cents as an RD is the runners did not get what they were promised and should be upset about the short course.  It baffles me that there are people that are happy to have a new PR on a course that could have been any where from .10 to .15 short.   For those that don't want to extrapolate the math at .1 miles short it was around 3% short.

     

    ps, I didn't run the race and I wasn't the RD.  just a curious bystander.


    Samurai in Training

      It should matter to them in my opinion, but if it doesn't they are only kidding themselves and making their next PR more difficult.  Unless there was a bet for beer.  That changes everything.


      Misty

        I ran a short 10k earlier this year and it was such a disappointment. I was on track for a big PR, then it just.....ended. My Garmin said 5.89, and after comparing data with other runners it was obvious that the course was significantly short. It sucks to run all out for 5.89 miles and not have a PR to show for it. And no, I didn't count it as a PR.

        Bless your heart.


        Muddling through

          It depends on the race. Yes, I know that sounds silly and wishy-washy, but I have a particular situation in mind. In general I would be quite upset and let the RD know. If I didn't get a firm sense that things would be changed, I not only wouldn't be back next year, I would spread word that the RD is not responsive to runners' concerns.

           

          I do have one local race that I can count on not having an accurately measured course. It is put on by a student organization so there is constant turnover in the organizers and experience and knowledge is lost. The course is rarely even the same from year to year as if each year is an inaugural event. Knowing this when I sign up ( I have personal reasons for running it), I adjust for the course each year and still almost always run a great race even if I have to extrapolate to get an estimated 5K time.

          2014 Goals: Run first trail ultra, first 100K, and see what I can do in a 24-Hour race

            My two cents as an RD is the runners did not get what they were promised and should be upset about the short course.

             

            My 2 c. matches your 2 c.  Very irritated when courses come up short.  But usually I check them in advance on the USATF website to see if they are certified.   (Although that is no guarantee, either).

             

            Personally I wouldn't count a run as a PR if it was run on a short course.

            - Joe

            all running goals are under review by the executive committee.


            I've got a fever...

              It matters -- I wouldn't claim a PR on a course I suspected or knew to be short -- but you do get what you pay for.  If the course was advertised as certified, you'd have every right to be upset.  If it's a small mom-and-pop-ish race (which is often the case with Turkey Trot), the expectation bar might be lower.  

               

              I'd me more miffed about a short course than long.  Records set on a long course still count.

               

              There is something to be said for the wisdom of the crowd, even without GPS.  People know when a course is off, or even a mile marker.  I ran several races in the pre-GPS era that were later determined to be me wrong.  Everyone knew it.  Entire cross country teams don't all PR on the same day without improving their standing against other teams (the course was found to be 256 yards short).

              On your deathbed, you won't wish that you'd spent more time at the office.  But you will wish that you'd spent more time running.  Because if you had, you wouldn't be on your deathbed.


              On On

                 -- but you do get what you pay for.  If the course was advertised as certified, you'd have every right to be upset.  If it's a small mom-and-pop-ish race (which is often the case with Turkey Trot), the expectation bar might be lower. 

                This was a medium sized Turkey Trot with 20+ years experience, around 2000 runners.   And they used a certified course. 

                 

                I think the RD just didn't lay out the course correctly on race day.  It is an out and back.  You put the turn around at the wrong flag pole could be enough to make the difference.  Just sloppy.

                ND Wolfwood


                  I agree that it depends on the race . . . 

                   

                  I ran a 5K back in April that was ~.1 mi short.  Sure, it was annoying (I was on pace to PR, albeit only slightly), but it wasn't a goal race (last-minute entry just to spice things up on a Sunday), the race shirt is actually one of my favorites that I continue to use quite frequently, and it was my first AG win.  Besides, the race had been organized as a fundraising event to benefit the family of a local runner/soccer coach who had been killed by a motorist while out on a run several months prior. Under the circumstances, I got over it pretty quickly.

                   

                  A goal race would have been a different story, I suppose . . .

                  R.

                  _____________________________________________________________________________

                  PR's: 5K - 19:21 (6/15/13) | 10K - 40:27 (7/4/13) | 10M - 1:06:44 (9/21/13)  | Half - 1:29:50 (2/17/13) | Full - 3:12:09 (10/26/13) | 6 HR - 37.05 mi (11/16/13)

                   

                  Upcoming Goal Race: Snickers Albany Marathon (3/1/14)


                  I've got a fever...

                    This was a medium sized Turkey Trot with 20+ years experience, around 2000 runners.   And they used a certified course. 

                     

                    I think the RD just didn't lay out the course correctly on race day.  It is an out and back.  You put the turn around at the wrong flag pole could be enough to make the difference.  Just sloppy.

                     

                    That blows.  That's the thing with certification -- it doesn't mean shit if you don't follow it.  Also, sometimes course will get screwed up when construction changes the curves, curbs, and layout slightly.  By rights, they need to get it re-certified in that scenario, but that often doesn't happen.

                    On your deathbed, you won't wish that you'd spent more time at the office.  But you will wish that you'd spent more time running.  Because if you had, you wouldn't be on your deathbed.

                      Personally I wouldn't count a run as a PR if it was run on a short course.

                      +1

                      “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

                      Arimathea


                      Tessa

                        Depends on the race. If it's supposedly certified and someone didn't bother to count fence posts and put the turnaround mark too soon, then I would be a bit upset, especially if I was running a good pace. I've been in some where the course was obviously short, others that were long, and some where the total seemed right but the mile markers were most definitely misplaced.

                         

                        For trail races, I don't complain. It's not like they can break new trail to make the course an exact length, and when the trails around here were laid out people weren't thinking about making life easy for race planners.

                        MJ5


                        Chief Unicorn Officer

                          Most of my local races are of the mom-and-pop variety so certified courses are the exception and not the rule.  That said, we have a fair amount of local talent and some sizeable running clubs who actually put on many races, so most are accurately measured.  If the course comes up less than .1 short on my Garmin, I typically don't think much of it because the Garmin isn't perfect (especially if the course has lots of turns).  .1 or over off, especially if others have a short measurement, I don't count it as a PR.  

                           

                          I did a Turkey Trot 2 weeks ago that was billed as a 5K but measured 2.67 miles!!  YIKES!!  Like Misty, I too was on track to PR, and then...it was over.  I was mad, but it was for charity, I won an actual turkey anyway, and I still had a great race.  What can you do.

                          Mile 5:49 - 5K 19:58 - 10K 43:06 - HM 1:36:54


                          HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

                            Mt SAC Cross Country Invitational is a pretty high profile race. It's well-known to be short, right?  - less than 5K, and less than the titular 3 miles.

                             

                            2012 Mt SAC Cross Country Invitational Race #70 - Girl's Team Sweepstakes - "3 Miles" - 15min highlight video: http://tinyurl.com/8kln6gf (featuring Sarah Baxter)

                             

                            Their FAQ on the course length: http://events.mtsac.edu/ccinvite/coursemisconceptions.htm

                            This page actually proceeds to a discussion of how the course is faster now than in previous decades due to surface changes, and widening in previously tight spots.

                            It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.


                            A Saucy Wench

                              Does it matter to THEM?.  Should it matter to THEM or does it matter to me?  Is this Turkey Trot a real race or is it a fun run?

                               

                              To most "serious" runners emphasis on the quotes it might matter.  To most of the participants of the Turkey trot it may not.  If they get serious and start doing other 5K's or 10K's they will eventually figure it out.   Maybe it is a PR because it is the only race they do at "that" distance so as long as the course is the same year to year, it actually is a PR.

                               

                              I have 2 local races that I suspect are short every year.  One of them is my 5K PR, but since it is the only 5K I do, I dont care if the course is short, I'm comparing B to B.  If I ever actually race another 5K I may care.  But I dont care because the race is put on by the cross country team to raise money for the team and all the money goes to the team.  The other is the turkey trot which the running club solved by now calling it "about 4 miles" and eliminated data keeping - it is a fun run only.  They are trying to keep the costs down so that more of the money goes to the Zoo.

                               

                              It would be nice if the RD was aware of the issue.  It would be nice if he let participants know.  But it doesnt mean runners SHOULD be upset.  Everyone runs for different reasons.

                              I have become Death, the destroyer of electronic gadgets

                               

                              "When I got too tired to run anymore I just pretended I wasnt tired and kept running anyway" - dd, age 7

                              Biking Bad


                              finnegan begin again

                                I ran a race once that my gadget measured short. There was no pro-rated refund. I was told I was permitted to run further. Unfortunately I was unable to run at all.  

                                 

                                But on a more serious note. I might be a bit peeved if I were gunning for it to be a goal race at the advertised distance.  It would be like trying to run a 24 hour race and the RD stopping it at 21 hours Wink

                                "... the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value..."  Thomas Paine Dec 23, 1776 The Crisis 

                                 

                                Adversity is the first path to truth. Lord Byron

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