Making Decisions In Races Is Fraught With Risk

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Carrying a slight or niggly injury into a race is a frustrating but annoying fact of life. What happens if it plays up in the race or starts to feel progressively worse? Should you pull-out?

What about if you're coming back from a virus or you've been training hard and are not sure how fatigued you are? If you feel a bit flat in the race, should you drop your pace or toughen up and push on, risking digging yourself into a hole?

Or your target race is next week and you only plan to complete half the distance in today's training event to save yourself for the big day. But out on the course you feel fantastic and are well placed - should you continue?

Don't leave important decisions to the race itself

We can't tell you the right and wrong answer for each of those cases but what we do know is that it's fraught with risk to make an important decision in the heat of the moment during a race. With your adrenaline pumping and heart rate high, its very easy to make a bad choice that you will regret later.

Our advice is don't leave those decisions until the race itself. In the days before an event think through any situations you might encounter in advance. Discuss them with someone you trust who is more experienced than you (e.g. your coach). Make a plan - if X happens I will do Y - then stick to it in the race.

Considering the big picture cooly and calmly, and sleeping on it a couple of times, will dramatically increase your chances of doing the right thing. No regrets.

For a great example of this in action, see Paul's article here:

Swim Smooth!

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