Anyone have any stories about races they've done, which in hindsite, should not have been started?
What were the reasons you shouldn't have started? We're their any long term (or short term) physical consequences?
my reason for asking is my current mental and physical state, as I get ready for my next race. I'm not where I thought I would be, and am questioning my sanity.
Trail and Ultra Running User Group
Le professeur de trail
My last three races dating back to April 2012. All were ones I started in less than stellar shape and nagging injuries. Needless to say I finished all of them. I suffered after all with the same nagging injuries a little worse and had to take things slow and easy for a while. I had fun and don't necessarily regret running them but just wasn't smart in hindsight. But I never said I was smart.
The incarnation of peacefulness and patience
You can only regret it f it goes poorly. I have two experiences that I can share and they have contrasting results.
Before the Laurel Highlands 70 miler last year, I was suffering from severe Lyme Disease symptoms. On top of that, I had a some kind of flu bug that had my stomach really messed up. I decided to start the race knowing I should be home in bed. After 19 miles, I stepped off the trail and called it a day. No long lasting issues, just a bad decision. I should have resting but I wanted to be out there with my buddies.
This year, at the Antelope Island 100, I was really sick from some bug I picked up in Jamaica. I was sick, tried and felt awful. I decided to start the race and TRY to run the first 19 miles. I ended up running 100 miles and finished in 9th overall.
The point is, its a tough call and you'll never really know what might happen if you go out to start the race, unless you decide to actually go do it. I guess you need to weigh the value of a DNF over DNS. For me, I would rather DNF and the Antelope Island race has only reaffirmed that decision.
Faster Than Your Couch!
No regrets, although I've had one or two pretty tough races. But I always convince myself that it was a good race, and over time, this is what stays in my memory.
I overheated once in a race, and I did not foresee this at all - temps were fairly low (80's), just higher humidity, but I thought I was used to that. So I do not regret having started the race, I just feel a bit bad about my performance there.
Run for fun.
Last year at Leadville 100 I wrenched my back about 10 days befor the start. Since everything was paid for and the arrangements made, I went anyway. It didn't get better before the start and I probably should have taken the DNS, but I gave it a shot and made it 50 miles for my first ever DNF.
No regrets though. However this summer I'll be there again, a little unfinished business (also taking better care of my back.)
Houston Marathon, Jan 15
I have just one DNF to my discredit. In retrospect I was young, inexperienced, ill prepared, lacked guidance from more experienced runners and probably had no business being out there in the first place (except maybe to learn a lesson). No permanent damage.
As long as I feel like I’ve done all that I can with the body I have on a given race day, there is no reason for regrets. I think I’m more likely to be disappointed by a race I’ve finished - with something left in the tank - than a race I’ve dropped out of totally expended.
Thread killer ..
Badly sprained ankle 2 weeks before a race I really wanted to do . At about mile 16 in the race I rolled it on a rocky downhill and was done . Should have let it heal and raced another day .
Had some emergency dental surgery the day before a race , decided to do anyway . The Dentist warned me I might have some trouble at elevation , the race was at elevation . Couldn't walk in a straight line let alone run over 8,000' , dizzy and just weird feeling . Pulled at 11 miles should have listened to the Dentist's warning .
I tend to regret signing up for every race on the morning of the race, but I usually feel that it worth it immediately afterward, or the next day. I think a lot of race preparation is mental. There are the miles, of course, but the head game seems to be where they real hurdles are.
Muir Woods from Stinson in 2008. I entered the 18 mile race. It was the morning of the Family Easter up the coast. I bailed at Pantoll and waited for my ride who was in the 7 mile race. We both fell going down Matt Davis, and I never made it to the Extended Family event that afternoon.
Looking back It was a dumb idea to try to fit a race in, and ditch my family.