Race Day Instructions

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djjazzyjoel22
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Race Day Instructions

Post by djjazzyjoel22 » Tue Apr 15, 2014 11:34 pm

What do you typically tell your runners before a race? Is it different for each one? I used to tell kids what I expected to see them run based on training performances and previous efforts, but found that either (a) my predictions were too grand and produced doubt in their minds or (b) they found themselves robotically hitting their splits with too much in the tank at the end. I've experimented with just giving them a first 400 split or first mile split for 3200/5000 runners, but haven't determined any one practice as a general rule.

Any suggestions?

dkggpeters
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Re: Race Day Instructions

Post by dkggpeters » Wed Apr 16, 2014 11:16 am

Having a target for the first split is still probably a good idea to keep them from going out to fast and blowing up.  Give them latitude after that to just go for it and just give it their all and do their best. 

Sure, a couple may still blow up but sometimes there is no better learning experience than to test your limits.

BoilerTom90
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Re: Race Day Instructions

Post by BoilerTom90 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 12:35 pm

I think it really depends on the kid and their experience.  A more experienced kid, whom is good at pacing and is able to increase effort to maintain pace, I would tell to try to run an evenly paced race.  I  think most would agree this is the ideal way to run one's best.  And with all the races I've watched, the best runners and usually those that win run even or negative splits. 

With the right training and enough races under their belt, they all can get to this state of racing.  The problem I see with this approach for those that don't have a chance of winning is the mental side of being so far behind at the 400m mark.  I'd talk with each runner about running their own race and not worrying about being 5 to 10 seconds behind so early in the race. Encourage them by saying "great job! Right on target pace..."

djjazzyjoel22
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Re: Race Day Instructions

Post by djjazzyjoel22 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:54 pm

Thanks guys, this is very encouraging as it's sort of what I'm doing now in not giving each one of them their exact splits per lap/mile, but giving them an opening split and something to shoot for. Much appreciated!

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