Setting Race Goals – Dayna Pidhoresky

By August 10, 2015Eastside 10k

VANCOUVER – August 11th – by Dayna Pidhoresky

Although summer is still in full force it feels like the fall racing season is fast approaching. Key races that once looked distant now seem to be barrelling towards me at warp speed. This panicked feeling beckons me to reassess how my current training is going so I can be more reasonable with this coming seasons’ goals. Obviously a goal should not be something too easy, but it should also not be something that would require some sort of divine intervention for you to achieve it.

Summer training quality and quantity tend to correlate closely with how your fall season will pan out. It is easy to experience setbacks during those dog-days of summer. It’s a busy time of year and, whether by vacations or juggling out-of-school-kids, those disrupted running schedules can make it difficult to get out the door. And maybe you do get out the door, but it’s hotter than hell and you barely make it to the end of your driveway before slumping over in a heap of despair. Or maybe, as in my case, you had a bit of an injury coming off the spring and have had to adjust training to accommodate. Whatever the circumstance it’s best to take a step back, observe the work you have been able to accomplish, and reassess your goals for the coming season.
08-11-dayna-ve2014Readjusting goals after setbacks is not a sign of weakness — this is something I need to remind myself often — it is a way to get back on track faster. Keeping goals that are too lofty or even too easy will only lead to decreased motivation. Your short term and seasonal goals need to reflect the efforts you put in over the previous months. They are not set in stone and should be considered flexible, especially in the short term. For myself, over the summer while dealing with some shin inflammation I often had to alter my daily volume based on how it was feeling each day. Naturally, the perfectionist in me wants to run each kilometre of every single day that is planned, but that approach could sideline me for the month and derail the entire operation. Flexibility is key in both day to day training and in establishment of goals.

So going into Eastside 10K on September 19th I know that my training over the summer has had a setback or two and my race goal will perhaps be less aggressive than I may have originally planned back in the spring. It will likely be a gauge for me to assess my fitness and a substantial workout as I set my eyes towards more future fall races. Whatever the case I’ll be lacing up my New Balance 1400s and keeping my focus on the big picture. Setbacks can either break you down and cause you to sling up your sneakers or cement your desire to run more deeply into your mind so you press on despite the push-back. Looking at your goals this season consider these points:

  • Has my training gone as planned since I had initially set my goals?
  • Do my goals need to be adjusted, either harder or easier?
  • Should I keep my goals as-is, but adjust my timeline (ex: aim for a later race)?
  • Do my goals keep me motivated (very important!!)?

See you at the races!

New Balance athlete Dayna Pidhoresky is one of Canada’s top distance runners and can frequently be seen at the top of the podium at both local and international races. The third place finish at last year’s Eastside 10k, Dayna has also held the national 10K title and a Canadian-best half-marathon time. 

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