Monday, February 1, 2016

Race Planning

Races fill up fast these days. It's likely you are looking at planning out your 2016 race calendar or have finished it up already. When athletes come to me to go over planning their race calendars these are some things I consider:

  1. Where do you live? If you live in a climate where it is dead of winter all the way into May it’s likely your race season is going to need to start a little later. To have the miles logged for an early year start you’ll need to live someplace where it's possible to be out on the road. If that's not you, it's probably best to plan your A races much later in the season. That said, if you do live where it's sunny and warm all winter but your summer is blasted with oven temps, you're better off hitting those early season races.

  2. How does your race season impact your life? If you have work commitments or family commitments that are higher at certain points of the year, it's likely your time will be limited and your personal stress will be high at those times. Those times are not good ones to throw in an A race. Choose a race based on when you know it's going to work for your life to be focused on the event at a time when you'll be less stressed.

  3. What race puts a fire in your belly? When athletes ask me what races they should do, the first thing I’ll ask is what races excite them? If I choose the race you might not find that extra special something inside yourself at 4 a.m. when the alarm goes off every day or when it gets tough out on that course come race day. It's got to be an event that excites you!

  4. What are your goals? If qualifying for a world championships or placing in your division is important, then looking at the courses race times history, the type of course, your strengths and these details are going to become more important.

  5. How much can you physically race? This is different depending on the athlete. Some athletes can compete a lot more and some are limited on number of races they have per season. How these are approached, timing of them and what your goals are all come into play when planning.

Planning your season should be done like any other road map. Time things out realistically to set yourself up for a great year.

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