Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Race Pacers

At the big races I've run, there has been a table set up for runners to join a pace group during the race. Looking at the available pacers, you can sign up to run with someone to keep you on track to finish at your goal. I've always thought this sounded like a great idea.

Until I've gone to the table and realized there are no pace groups for my speed. For the upcoming Zooma Annapolis run, there are pace groups:

Finish Time
Pace Time

The finish time I am hoping for is 2:49:59. Yea. There isn't a pace group for that. I'm not picking on Zooma. When I ran Shamrock, there wasn't a pace group for me either. Apparently, pace groups aren't for the slow. The slow runners, the ones who really need the support and encouragement, are the ones without it.

I don't know why there aren't pace runners for all anticipated finishers. Aren't all runners worth having every advantage provided for at a race? I could sure use assistance in reaching my goal on the race course, just like those aiming for a sub-2 hour or even the 2:30 finish. I know I can change this by running faster, but I'm not there yet. At some point, I might be, but right now I'm not. I'm just hoping for a sub-13 minute mile over the course of the race. If I can accomplish that, I'll earn myself a PR. But I'll be earning that PR on my own, without the assistance of a pacer.

What do you think? Should races provide pacers for all runners?


  1. I have a lot of negative things to say about RnR races, but I will give them credit for providing plenty of pacers. I know they have them to at least 3:00, a friend and I ran near them during the San Antonio RnR. ALL runners deserve pace groups no matter there speed.

  2. I've never run a RNR race. Not sure why, but just haven't. It's good to hear at least one large race group helps even the slow runners. All runners should have every advantage, not just the fast ones. And this isn't to say the pacers should be taken away from the fast runners just because they don't have slower pacers. Just add a pacer for the slower runners. I know it sure would help me as I tend to slow up at the end of a race. Having someone there to keep pushing me would be amazing!

  3. Honest to God truth what I think? I think you are faster than you give yourself credit for? How do I know? Because I think we are all capable of being faster than we are. This might be just the opportunity to start pushing yourself just a little harder and see what you have in there. Now, let me first say this. I just heard through the grapevine that someone has just been saying this exact same thing about me. At first I was upset about it and then I thought, " I bet they are right. Good luck at Zooma.

  4. Ann, I have no doubt you are correct. I am sure deep down in there I am faster than I run. I know I have fear that if I go too fast I won't finish. I'm still so shocked that I can run a half marathon (or any race) that I am too afraid to push too much, thinking maybe I have reached my limits. I hope not! I want that PR at Zooma. But, I know if I had a pace runner at 2:45 or 2:50 I would feel a whole lot better pushing myself to keep up.

  5. I'm probably in the minority here, but I hate pacers! They are a mind game for me and seeing a pace group pass or near me just messes with me during a race. Often they run off pace and stop just to get back. Looking at the list there, they are lacking at both ends, while I say I prefer not to run with pacers I am in the 1:30-1:35 goal and sometimes it is nice just to have a group to stay in front of.

    1. Very impressed with your finish time! Wow. That just boggles my mind. LOL! But, you make a good point. I didn't think of those who are faster than that and could use the help to stay on track (even if you're not a big fan). I guess you have to be "average" to warrant a pace runner.