So much to consider when planning and organizing for the racing season!
I don’t know about you, but when it comes to organizing and planning for the racing season there seems to be so much to consider. The racing season is full of excitement and expectations! Months are spent training in the pursuit of goals! So, of course you want to create the most efficient and achievable race calendar that will leave you feeling accomplished and fulfilled.
Decisions, Decisions-Consider these Items When Planning Your Race Calendar!
- How far ahead should you plan out your racing season? 3 months, 6 months or a full year? I am cautious when it comes to planning out my races and paying for too many races upfront! Life happens and family obligations, injuries and other things can disrupt the race schedule. I prefer to plan out my calendar for 3-4 months at a time. I also consider the purpose and intention of my training cycles in regards to my goal race distance!
- Location, Location! How far are you wanting/willing to travel for races? Are you wanting race through a scenic country side, roads along the coast or through the city streets? Consider area hotels, travel time and how these logistics will effect you on race day. Depending on the distance of races from home, you will need to think about traveling by air plane, car or train. The amount of travel leading up to race day can impact your rest and focus before the race.
- Terrain for Racing and the Course? Be sure when planning your race calendar that you research the course terrain and elevation maps. Will the course be completely flat or rolling hills? Also, find out whether the course is completely paved, dirt trails or a combination of both. You want to be prepared ahead of time. Two other things to consider is whether or not the course is an “out and back” or “point- to -point”. These logistics can effect spectator locations, parking and arrival before the race.
- Weather/Climate – As I plan my race calendar, I think about the location and distance of my races and the weather. I race shorter distances in the summer months in places where there is heat and humidity. I save my longer distances for either a cooler time of year or for a location that has typically cooler/colder weather. Weather can be a factor when it comes to training for a particular race, you must consider the type of conditions that you will be racing in on race day. Weather can be unpredictable, but keep in mind the weather/climate that works best for you and prepare ahead of time during training season. Go for some runs in the rain, embrace the hot/sweaty runs and love the cold days too!
- How Many Races? Goal Race Versus Smaller Races- When planning my races, I consider my goal race. My goal race is that ultimate conclusion to a training cycle, all those months of preparation and hard work that go into pursuing a goal time for a specific distance. Racing distances also play a factor in how many races I place on my calendar. It’s a matter of choosing shorter distance and racing more often or focusing on two or three longer distances and planing for less races on the calendar. Whether you are training for a 5k, 10k, 13.1 or 26.2 race, depends on how many races you organize in a season! One idea to consider is planning your goal race distance, then focusing on adding in a few other races as tune-ups.
And Remember! Enjoy the process, focus on your training and love the journey to the races. Stay focused, train hard and celebrate at the races!
What’s On Your Racing Calendar? Any tips when organizing and Planning?