Setting Season goals – Gaining a better focus
Creating season goals, using races or performance measures, is one big step towards gaining a better training focus and increasing fitness. Creating a few key events to perform well at is always the smartest way to approach a long season of endurance training and racing. Creating non priority events is a great way to work high end intensity, experience a race day mindset and gain valuable race day experience. Once you have a few main events to target, you can begin to organize your weekly and monthly training focus leading up to each race.
Goals should be set as challenging and realistic as possible. Race goals should not always be focused on finishing time. Goals should also be focused on improving mechanics, lowering your perceived exertion, improving mental aspects and finishing strong. Gaining a more specific race goal will allow you to conduct training in a way that will benefit you the most. If you are new to marathon running, your goal may be to simply finish a marathon. This would be a realistic goal. To achieve this goal, you may need to focus on more base training compared to a veteran runner. You also may need to focus on better mechanics, allowing you to become more efficient. When becoming more efficient with better mechanics, you use less energy. Using less energy will allow you to work a little harder for a longer duration of time and that may help you finish in a stronger, faster way.
Having goals to compete in many events within one season provides a big challenge physically and mentally. This is usually the goal for experienced to elite racers. It is almost impossible to be on the top of your game for every event throughout the year. Identifying your targeted races to do well at will allow you to look at your other races as training and race preparation. Even if you are only planning a few races within the season, identifying secondary events is still important. Your secondary events are usually referred to as your “B” events and are good to use to test new skills, feel new strength and handle new speeds. Preparing for a “B” event needs to be more casual mentally and is sometimes thrown into your training weeks with little rest leading into the race. Categorizing each event will allow you to enter into each race with a certain mindset. This will allow you to be better prepared mentally and physically for the race and the outcome.
Establishing goals for the season will allow you to have a more meaningful, and fun training experience. It is easier to conduct your day and maintain a good focus on training if you are training for a reason. Your reasons for training may include finishing a 10K run in six months, compete in an ultra distance bike race or to finish a marathon with the leaders. Whatever your goal may be, setting a goal will help keep you focused one day at a time.
Mike Schultz CSCS
Highland Training LLC
Phone: 814.289.6620 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org