Archive for January, 2013

Making Your Mind Up

January 30, 2013

Time for an update, I think.

A couple of blogs ago, I said I’d make no quick decisions about my racing in 2013. I’ve made some decisions after a lot of thought, and quite a lot of trying to put off the need to make those decisions. The passage of time was inevitably a factor, given the need to put in entries for upcoming track meets, commit to travel and accommodation for overseas events, and so on.

The modified training I’m doing to work around the pain in my left foot, caused by medial arch problems, is going well. What’s really going well is my training routine. I’m fortunate to live ten minutes walk away from a well-equipped and relatively spacious gym. I’ve been a member long enough to know some of the staff quite well, and it’s a good, supportive environment in which to train. Right now, it is the core of all my training; because there is simply no point in me trying to train on a track (20 miles away) all the while running is so painful and counter-productive.

I’m fortunate these days to have great power over my diary, and I have managed to stay in a very regular routine which gets me three good training sessions each week, and enough rest between each of these. I’m also able to train at quiet, off-peak times of day, albeit that the price is training alone almost all of the time. Previous blogs refer.

If there was ever “a plan”, it was sort-of a hope that as I got fitter and stronger during the winter, I’d a) cope better with the problem in my foot, b) realize that the indoor track season was imminent, and c) somehow turn up ready to race, come the day. However, it’s a plan full of holes and by mid January, it was really only part b) that was coming to fruition!

There’s no doubt I’ve made some very good progress in terms of fitness. I’ll blog sometime about the two iPhone apps I’ve used for quite a long time to track this. I’m seeing objective evidence of progress, and the subjective evidence matches it! But I’m a sprinter, and sprinters race.

Deciding to skip all indoor competition this winter was quite easy. I’d only have entered something like four meets. I’ll actually still be going to them all as a photographer. As I write, the start of the stuff I normally do for my summer track season is more than four months away, and I remain optimistic that I’ll be racing then. However, the extent and the level of that racing is the issue.

This year sees the World Masters Championships taking place in Brazil, and not until October. Several issues I’d cite, even before the matter of sheer cost: I’ve never wanted to go to Brazil. I’ve never been convinced by the assurances from those hosting these championships that they will be able to put on a good show. And I’ve certainly never wanted to drag my competitive season out until October.

Because the latter is pretty much what would be involved. Nothing in my domestic racing calendar is due to start later than usual. The national Masters championships, which are usually in late June or July aren’t going to happen until mid September this time. There is no mid-season lull, either.

Factor in my plan to spend another month or more in the Alps this September/October, following the success of the trips in the last two years, and my decision became quite easy. I will only be doing local races in 2013. That means the Kent Masters League. It might mean nothing else.

It’s the end of January. That is the plan. I am content with it. At this point, I don’t see it being likely to alter much, although if it did, my concern is that the alteration would be towards even further reductions in my racing plans.

And sorry, real music lovers, but that Eurovision song was really the only choice for my title this time.