The excitement is real! Tomorrow sees the start of my competitive athletics season commence. This will be a specifically special competition for me as it will be the first time I run indoors. Not just my first indoor competition but one of only a handful of previous races I have ran in Ireland since returning to Spain. Although the competition itself is not a huge one and certainly not one I would pinpoint as an important part of my season, it’s still going to be exciting nonetheless.
The competition is the Munster U23’s, which takes place in Nenagh Indoor Track (Munster is a province in Ireland), and I will be running the 60m and 200m. Realistically, the 60m can be considered a strange race for me to run – as I am a 400m runner. I thought hard about what I wanted to do race wise and in the end I think my decisions can be justified. As it will be the first time I run indoors, I felt it would be good to experience every sprint race. Thus, why I choose to try the 60m more so just to experience it. I’m intrigued to feel the difference between a competitive 60m race and a 100m race. The 200m will be the one I concentrate more on, and I will be looking for a specific time. As for the 400m race, I don’t think I’m currently ready to run it just yet and need to train a bit more before I throw myself into that gauntlet. I’m confident of running a 400 in the next few weeks though. So, for now I will be concentrating more on 200m races.
As for my goals tomorrow, I don’t really have any due to certain circumstances. The main one being that lady luck has had her way and cast me down with a pretty hefty flu! It has seen me miss training from Wednesday onwards and it doesn’t seem to be clearing up. It seems as though a lot of people have been struck down with this flu, which is swarming through Limerick. The possibility of me even running tomorrow could highly reduce tomorrow morning, depending on how I feel once I wake up. Nevertheless, I won’t dwell on this and certainly will not use it as an excuse! I understand that if it doesn’t clear it, I will need to lower my expectations. There will be plenty more races throughout the year, so it’s not the be all and ends all but I was very much looking forward to running. If I do end up running, I will be looking more so for times as opposed to placings in the races. The 60m time isn’t important to me as it will not correlate much to my 400m time, however this will not be the case for the 200m. This will certainly correlate to my 400m time and give me a rough idea of where I am currently after a four month block of pre-season training.
The only problem I have now with looking for times as opposed to placings is the flu. This will no doubt affect the times I run if it doesn’t clear up by tomorrow morning. So, as I’ve said above, my expectations will be lowered and I’ll look at the competition as a learning curve and experience in the bank. Either way, I’m going to stay positive and enjoy the day.
If I was to set any goals, they would be to run maybe a 7.50 for the 60m and low 23’s for the 200m. This would leave me in a good place to possibly break the 23 second mark come February/March and possibly see me break the 50 second mark in the 400m come summer time. As I’ve explained though, it is now currently not in my control. I find it funny that I pick up a flu a few days before my first race, but what is meant to be will be! I’m not going to get upset over it.
The other side of it is that the actual track itself does not lend itself to running fast times, it’s actually notorious for being a slow track. My coaches put it perfectly to me explaining that I shouldn’t be surprised or shocked If I run a 24 or 25 second race, which is something I’ve never done in my career to date. I’ve consistently stayed in the 23’s. I was also told that you can expect to knock a second off your time when you get to a better indoor track. Another aspect they told me was that it takes time to get used to the indoor track, which is completely different to an outdoor track. The bends are steep and there’s no constant flatless like you would get on an outdoor track. The possibility of this actually putting me off could be high, especially if I get lane 3 or 4 which starts on a high steep. They’ve told me to look upon my first indoor season as an adjustment period and learning curve, instead of looking for certain times and placings.
Even Though this sounds like I am setting myself up for a safe cave incase I run bad, that’s not the case. This is genuinely all that has been said to me, but I was just going to go out and do what I always do. RUN! All these aspects don’t bother me and I was just looking forward to going out and getting on the track in a competitive nature. All these problems won’t get me down and I’m going to enjoy every moment of it regardless. If friends, family and other people expect a lot from me and I disappoint them, it won’t phase me. It’s a long road ahead and I’m in it for the long run. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will my athletic career. I’m improving greatly but with anything it takes time. So if people lose faith in me after one race, it’s not going to stop me training hard and continuing to improve. Onwards and upwards!
Updates to follow 🙂