People always want to be the best in everything and have the best of everything. You want the best shoes, the best gps watches, the best running gear, and the best times. Runners will spend hours and hours training for upcoming marathons, half marathons, 10k, and 5k races.
have this huge obsession with time and will train extra hard to make those extra secs and minutes when they complete the race. Each time you PR (personal record) it’s all happy and joy. You can have a guilty free food binge afterwards because you deserve it.
However when you do bad and your time is not even close to your old PR then what do you do? Don’t sweat it and just relax. It’s not the end of the world! Simply view your results and see what happened and take notes. This race was a failure but this is what I learned from it.
Here’s a True Story
Back in November 2012 I ran the San Francisco US Half which runs from the Embarcadero to the Golden Gate and back. I completed the race in under 2:30:00. My expected time was under 2 hours until I hit mile 11.
There was a downhill portion and I ended up running it way too fast causing my leg to cramp up horribly.
By default this was already a PR because it would have been my farthest run to date at the time. But since I had this mentality of being a little greedy on my time, I ended up crashing and burning.
I was disappointed for days but then I realized, this was my FIRST race not my LAST. Your first time of everything will be your worst because in theory runs after that should be quicker.
When should you PR?
Training runs usually aren’t meant to PR but if you do end up PR’ing then that’s good. If you’re confident you can PR your race then by all means do it. However if it’s a beautiful race with a nice scenery or a fun race, don’t even bother. Enjoy yourself for once!
Don’t try to compete in every single race
This will lead you to giving up running because each time you don’t PR it will discourage you. So my take on this topic is, don’t be discouraged on PR there will be bad training days and bad races PERIOD as a fact!