Number 2

February 18, 2009 at 9:46 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 14 Comments

Life saver

You start your run and everything seems to be fine and just when you are starting to pick up your pace your stomach starts to boil. You suddenly realize the urgent need to find a toilet. If you have been running long enough you would have experienced this in one of your training runs or even worse during a race.

My advice to you is to bail out as soon as possible. Mentally strategize the location of the closest decent toilet and make your way to it as soon as possible. If you have to walk then please do so. If the closest toilet is uphill forget it. The extra exertion might be your doom. Also, please remember that it is like giving birth. Check the contractions of your tummy. If it is every 10-15 minutes then you will still have time. If it is every minute then you can expect the worst.

I have managed to avoid this for the most part by establishing a routine. I do my business first thing in the morning. That way I get all the trouble out of the way before the start of any run or race. I also try to avoid Number 2, inducing food before a run or a race. Keep track of all the available toilets in your training ground so you are not scrambling in time of need. Check the race courses and make sure you know where the emergency stops are.

Good luck and I hope you never experience the curse of Number 2!

See you at the starting line or maybe at the portalet queue!

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Know Your Pace

February 10, 2009 at 11:20 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 12 Comments

The racing season is upon us and we practically have a race each weekend. A lot of us weekend warriors will be running and testing our mettle. Racing requires a lot of concentration and patience. Running at the right pace is the key in doing well.

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My success in high school can be attributed to running the race to the best of my ability. There were other more gifted runners and I would sometimes outrun them only because I maximized my potential by running the correct pace. There is nothing worse than being the best runner and yet losing the race.

We all know the feeling of running out too fast and painfully realizing our mistake as clouds of doom gather around us. We start running out of breath and every muscle hurts as we end up slowly jogging or even walking.

The other extreme is when we start running too slow and conserve our energy. Next thing we know the finish line is upon us and we are left wondering what if I had ran a little faster, maybe and just maybe I might have gotten my PR.

We also have to remember to factor in the environment on race day which may affect our performance. Our pace at a flat course on a windless day will be faster than we run on a hilly course or against a strong headwind.

The scientific way to set your pace is to don a heartrate monitor and stay within your threshold. If you can’t afford one then you will have to rely on perceived effort and maybe use a stopwatch to check your splits at the kilometer markers.

Check this classic race. The mens 800 meter finals of the 1972 Olympics. Keep track of the guy with cap and take note he ran his own pace even if it meant being last place till the last 300 meters.

Was it Sun Tzu who said” know yourself and you will win half your battles.”

See you at the starting line

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