8yrs ago I signed up for my first organized run, a 10K. My goal wasn’t to finish the thing, I’d never run 10K before to my knowledge. This was long before I owned a smart phone never mind a gps enabled watch. No my goal was to impress. Impress a certain lady who was herself an avid runner. Let’s just say post race she was less than impressed and thus started the quick downward spiral to never talking again. I can’t pinpoint this as the reason for my hate for running goals but sure it may have something to do with it. My best guess to why though lies in the fact that I’m inherently lazy, there I’ve said it!
All this hate though has recently vanished and has left me feeling uneasy and excited all at the same time. See over the years I have been posting alright times, middle of the pack times. I’ve dropped my 10K steadily down from my first which was just shy of 1 hour and have posted a couple pretty consistent 1:35 Halfs. Half decent times for a casual runner but also times that left me not really sure what to do next, not times that see me pushing for an AG win or qualifying for anything at all. Than comes October 2015.
The Valley Harvest races in Wolfville, Nova Soctia have become a mainstay for my wife and I. We have run almost all of the events over the past few years and have never been disappointed. This past year instead of running the half I decided to do the 10K which is my distance of preference. A distance I hadn’t yet run at this event. Unlike most of my events I decided to come up with a strategy for a good finish. I spoke to an Olympic track hopeful I know and laid it out for him, he told me there could be no worse possible plan than what I came up with. My plan, stand right on the start line and run as fast as I could out of the gate and maintain it for as long as I could. I knew myself this goes against all sound running advice but I was prepared to either fizzle completely out or post a PB, it was the last race of the season so I don’t have much to lose.
So how does this all translate into goals? I ended up posting a PB of 43:08 that day, it wasn’t easy and I definitely wouldn’t advise trying it but that day has given my running a purpose. It allowed me to realize that maybe setting a goal and putting a little focus into what I’m doing won’t be a bad thing. So gone are my goals of trying to reach levels that are probably unrealistic for myself like the allusive BQ and hello to the goal that still won’t be easy but lies much closer, a sub 40 10K.