The Trouble In Racing After Time

As a runner, you have to face the truth about yourself on a regular basis, and it makes you more honest. You can’t pretend to be faster than you are. You can’t pretend that you are better prepared than you are. You cannot pretend to be a runner, you actually have to run.
— John Bingham
The Trouble In Racing After Time

I don't know if I've ever mentioned this on the blog before, but I'm not a fan of the indoor track season. Never have been and probably never will be. I'm not sure if it's the endless frustration that always seems to occur or that it's so short that you never really feel as prepared as you should be.

This year hasn't been much different. Of course, I'm approaching it with a much different mindset than when I was in college. I'm not working towards any conference, and there's no World Indoor Championship to try and qualify for this year, so I've been treating it as a way to set myself up for a great outdoor season.


This past weekend, I got a PR in both the 60 (7.35) and the 200 (24.16).


Chiebuka and I getting that post-meet selfie in

Chiebuka and I getting that post-meet selfie in

I've never thought anything of the 60. It's always seemed too short for me, and I tended to just look at it as a way to focus on my mechanics. I'm usually happily surprised by a PR and barely disappointed by a bad race.

The 200, on the other hand, has always had a special place in my heart. Waaay back in the day, when I was a 400 runner, I thought that it was the perfect distance for a race. Short enough where you're not dying at the end, but long enough where you have time to really get going.

Personally, I've been looking towards my 200 for my major indoor goals. I know I've talked about chasing times before, but I'll bring it up again. I'm chasing that 23. I want to break 24 seconds so badly. I really, really want it. I wanted it 2 years ago, I wanted it last year, and I want it now.

I'll admit I probably wasn't ready last year. I was still figuring out the "out of college thing" while also adjusting to a new coach and new training plans.

This year I feel like I'm ready. I feel so close I can taste it. I visualize that 23-mid (because of course, it can't be just any 23 time) so often, it sometimes seems like it's already happened.

But all this is my downfall. Chasing times has always been one of my greatest weaknesses in track and field. I get so obsessed with where I should be, that I forget all the steps along the way and get frustrated when it's not the end-goal I'm looking for. 

I think that's the difference between my 60 and 200 this indoor season. When I run the 60, I'm not running towards a specific time. Yes, if I PR and get an amazing time, I'll be happy, but when I'm on the line, I'm not thinking anything except executing my race. 

I need to do that with the 200. I need to calm down. I need to execute. I need to race. I need to appreciate all the steps along the way. The time will come. I know it will.