I’ve decided to change this blog up. Up until now I have been doing the normal oh race report here maybe a little talk there but honestly do you really care about someone’s race report that much unless they take amazing pictures during the race which I don’t I am too focused. So lets make this a blog and not a journal look at what I did here and oh here and sure I might throw those in somewhere again but lets change things.
Now that’s not to say that sometimes yea you are just out there to run for fun or with no time goal but to finish heck even me who’s so competitive with myself has done that sometimes but I think most of the time you are like hell yea if I can go x in y time it would be amazing. I had an older gentleman once tell me that he does it for fun and that his pr day’s are gone so yea he’s just out there to do it and enjoy it still. I told him well I am still young and I can still pr so yea while I still can and before time catches me I am sure as hell going to try for it as often as I possibly can. Heck I can see myself at 65 just trying to set a new 60-70 year old pr, maybe my pr’s will need to change soon I can run as a master maybe I will have to make my new pr’s master pr’s but screw that I only started running when I was 33 I still can beat those times.
So I started to look at my race goals normally I go into a race with a stretch goal, a A goal and a B goal. I know there is probably zero chance I make that stretch goal unless I have that one magical unicorn race and those are so rare and amazing by damn you don’t find that unicorn that often. It’s there though because it’s the goal that hey maybe you don’t get it today unless you have that magically perfect race but you won’t to get it eventually and it’s what you work at. As I have raced over the years that stretch goal has changed and evolved. When I first started running when I had no dreams of running a marathon it was to run a sub 30 5k and 2:11 half. Why a 2:11 half marathon well that happens to be exactly a 10 minute mile. I had no delusions of a sub 2 half I just wanted to beat a 10 minute mile for 13.1 miles that was all. So my first sub 2 was anticlimactic and actually might be the closest I have ever come to that magical unicorn race and meeting a stretch goal (heck I might have its hard to remember what your stretch goal was five years later unless you wrote it down) where and to date I still consider it the best race I have ever run.
The reason being was because I was chasing that 10 minute mile which I got in August of 2011 running a 2:08:47 shortly before my first marathon and then the very next half marathon I ran I blew it out of the water running a 1:55:31 just that November. I remember knocking my gloves out of my pocket at mile 2 or 3 and actually backtracking to get them other than that it was a nearly perfect and flawless race for my current fitness. That’s when the goal became a sub 4 marathon because I just ran a sub 2 half. Just the month before my stretch goal had been a 4:30 marathon with a sub 5 as my A goal. All of a sudden the sub 4 was born off that one magical race.
But those races when I hit my A goal have been so rare and far between that 1:55 half running my first sub 30 5k, running my first sub 1 hour 10k, running that sub 5 marathon and then surprisingly this year with my half ironman with my 7:16 as my stretch goal for the 70.3 has been and still is sub 7. My B goal is almost always to PR who doesn’t want to PR. That B goal always means every time you hit it it’s just going to be that much harder to hit it the next time and the next time. It’s hard to be sad about PRing although yea I have been disappointed in PRs like my half pr as I was on pace for my stretch goal of a 1:45 all the way up to mile 10 when I stopped to tie my shoes and couldn’t get going again. It’s devastating to go from running 8 minute miles to 9-10 minutes struggling to finish.
The last few years I have had to settle for knowing all I was going to do was finish but even then I tried to hit some type of time goal. I wanted to run a 4:45 at the marathon last year I still wanted to run sub 2 at all my halves even though I knew I had let myself slip to where I couldn’t anymore. I think goals are important and your stretch goal is something you should always be reaching for I hope soon to finally get that sub 4 which would have been a stretch goal once and now is an A goal as my stretch goal is starting to look like a BQ. Always evolving always changing and always altering.