Tuesday, November 29, 2011

From One Race to the Next

If you've ever looked at my race page, you've seen that I have run in five road races in my adult life. I obviously dont race a ton. The only time that I've run one race right after another was in October, when I ran/walked the Somerset 8k with Nathan 8 days after dominating Baltimore. I did Somerset more as a social activity and, hopefully made apparent by my 1:01:03 finish time, I did not race it.

This week I'm in a weird place, though. I raced a 10k on Thursday and I am "racing" the Hot Chocolate 15k on Saturday. I should have planned ahead better and done one last "training" run over the weekend but I didn't. So I've been unsure exactly what to do this week. Last week, I tapered for the Turkey Chase. Do I just carry on the taper?

My answer is yes. But, as I've said before, I have a really hard time running slowly leading up to a race. I always want to speed along and prove to myself that I can run fast. So last night, I let myself do that. But only for 2.47 miles.

Then I woke up this morning and let myself run slower for 4.0 miles.

While running, I thought about the Hot Chocolate race but not in an "OMG, it's this weekend and I'm stressing" kind of way. I actually thought about how little I have blogged about it and, apparently, how little I've cared. Unlike Baltimore, and even the Turkey Chase to an extent, for which I was planning finishing time goals and speed workouts weeks and months in advance, I have done very little to prepare for Hot Chocolate specifically. I'm not too worried about this because I am confident that my preparation for the 10k will suffice as preparation enough for a 15k.

The big question, now that the race is four days away, is: What the hell kind of goals am I going to set for myself? In answering this question, there are several things to consider...

  • I have about a million friends running this and I plan to run with at least a few of them so it will be hard to set specific pace goals without knowing what they're thinking and planning.
  • The race is going to be extremely crowded and trying to dodge people the entire time will just frustrate me.
  • This is my first 15k so I get an automatic PR. Yes!
  • This will be the furthest I've run since my sweaty dance (and, by dance, I mean fight to the death) with Baltimore.
  • It would be nice to burn a ton of calories so that I can consume gallons of ghirardeli hot chocolate fondue at the after party.
  • It will be cold so running fast is imperative to staying warm.
  • And, last but not least, I want to have fun.

So help me friends: How does one prepare for back to back races? Have you ever raced with friends? If so, do you set goals together or do you just run for fun and ignore the clock?

Are you running Hot Chocolate? Want to hang out and eat fondue together afterward?

And finally, have you entered my Sparkly Soul headband giveaway yet? All the cool kids are doing it!


  1. This sounds like the best race ever! Probably becaue of what will be waiting for you at the finish line! I have never run a 15K but I imagine it will be a great distance! I have also never run back to back races but I think you have enough training under your belt to do amazing. I only ran one race with a friend. It was her first 5k so we didn't set a time goal. I stayed with her for support and we had a lot of fun along the way! Running with no goals is needed sometimes, in my opinion. Sometimes we put so much pressure on ourselves and take the fun out of races. I think if you're going to be with friendsd, enjoy it! Make a fun experience out of racing. And like you said, it's an automatic PR! You've got nothing to lose :)

  2. iM RUNNING THE HOT CHOCOLATE! and I decided to not take it too seriously. Genny and I are just going to run as far as we can and then hang out/walk until we want to run more. Fondue for sure though.