Wednesday, February 5, 2014

DNF or planned 15km

In years gone by I would have called that a swear word, but there is a time and place for DNF or even a DNS...

Just last week I was reading a blog about a lady who was about to DNS (did not start) a 50mile race, she just found out she was pregnant!!! good reason to DNS. My friend Steve had entered the half on Saturday, and as I ran past he was on the side of the road DNS, calf injury!!! Now what happened to me?

We were out celebrating a friends birthday, now did I eat to much? Was the meat not 100%? Did I drink too much? or was my old body warn out from the weeks training and racing? Then again maybe it was yet another late night and early morning... Excuses aside I was up before 5 and not feeling very strong, but still I put on my running cloths and headed out the door. Dawn joined me on the bike while I ran the 5.7km to the start. The plan was easy, run the race, and let Dawn cycle round and then home to pick up a car and fetch me. I didn't want to do to much before my 'real' race on Sunday!!!

The warmup had been slower than planned, so I only had a fewer minutes to join waiting runner. There the race was delayed 5 minutes... with my breath back I was ready to run. The races starts down hill and while I started slowly it was still fast enough to pass the 1km mark in 3:48 (80min pace). I joined up with Ben and a couple of other guys who were out for a tempo run.. Things were fine till about 3km in when Ben and his running partner pulled ahead. It didn't worry me to much as they had picked up the pace a bit and I wasn't wanting to kill myself. One of my club mates was still with me and we passed 5km in 18:55. Game on I thought... 8km in 30:13 and then as we climbed the little hills to 9 and 10 I fell to pieces... 39:08. I was now over 60sec behind the pace and was slowing with every step.
After passing 12 in 48:10, I decided that I needed a couple of sub 4's on the next couple of down hill km to stay in the game.

It was bad (and slow) and I stopped enjoying the run, so at the 15km board I hit the stop button 62:46!!! After a short walk down the road I stood on the courner and watch the rest of the race. I was only 1km from home, and I would live to fight another day. I had a long wait for Dawn to come back on the bike, but I had sent word and I had nothing better to do...

I did end up running that km home to give me 21.7km for the day, but it's not about how fast you run, it's not about how slow you run, it's not about how far you run... IT'S ABOUT HAVING FUN / ENJOYING THE RUN, so I had made the right call.

After mid-morning nap and my Saturday returned to normal and I was ready to take on Sunday the the next Trail Race...

Another early morning another race, but I felt so much better and set off with the leaders. While Bernard did get away from me I set the pace in 2nd with Craig and Eddie following. With over 6km of mostly climbing I turned onto the single track in 2nd with Craig still on my shoulder. I push a couple of 100m but he was up for the task, so I changed the game and set about controling the race. This kid is quick with a sub '4' 1500m track time and I know I couldn't beat him on the down and the single track wasn't scary enough. Now I didn't want us to catch Bernard (my teammate) but it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if Eddie (my other teammate) caught us... So while I keep an honest pace I know Eddie might give it his all on the down... He did and caught us just over 1.5km from the end. I let him go by and Craig as well and the 2 of them set about racing... But the kid still had enough and kept Eddie at bay, while I jogged home in 4th pace, 1st 40+...

15km tempo was just perfect as a Saturday warm-up...


  1. It's funny how your body just pulls the pin on you some days. I guess it's not surprising that you might occasionally DNF a race when you run so many.

  2. Interesting. NOt sure i could stop in a 21k at 15k unless something wasnt right, but as you say you didnt feel right to start ad your pace was way off what you normally run. At least Sunday showed it was just a bad day

  3. Ian, the question is, have you ever cut a training run short?

  4. I've done the whole range of DN's and I've never regretted my decision. Good call on the day.

  5. "It's about having fun/enjoying the run" in CAPS. I am so with you on that :)