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16 August 2010

The Goal, the Hope, the Dream

When preparing for a race I find it useful to envision three targets…

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When preparing for a race I find it useful to envision three targets:

The Goal: this is the time which, knowing my training, my body and the course, I know I should get. Missing this target is ultimately a disappointment, and hitting it is merely satisfaction in knowing that my training paid off the way it should have.

The Hope: if I’m having an “on” day and feeling good, knowing that my training has led me to the potential of running in my “hope” time. Weather, pre-race diet, or an off-day can keep me from hitting my hopeful time. Hitting this target leaves me feeling good about what I’m able to accomplish, a runner’s high knowing that I’ve hit a new PR for the race. I’m not only satisfied, I’m downright happy.

The Dream: the stars must align, the weather be perfect, and with a little luck I may hit this target. It’s not attainable without everything aligning just so, but having the target out there is constant motivation to push a little harder, a little farther to one day be able to make “the Dream” into “the Hope.” If I reach this target, I’m dumbfounded, flabbergasted, caught flatfooted. It’s nearly unthinkable.

So, practically speaking, here’s how it works out for my first marathon, the Road2Hope in Hamilton, ON:

The Goal: under 4:00 (3:59:59 will do).

The Hope: 3:40

The Dream: 3:15 (Boston Qualification)

We’ll see how it all works out!

About Sven

I'm an 'average' 30-something runner trying to achieve above-average results and help others do the same. After running on-and-off for the past 20 years and overcoming some health hurdles I'm 'on-again' to pursue some of the best running of my life! 5k 18:48.2 | 10k 41:17.5 | 21.1k 1:30:56 | 30k 2:14:58 | 42.2k 3:17:22

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