I race like Ryan Hall
It has occurred to me that I race like Ryan Hall — at least in long races, which I'll classify as 15k or longer. I try and run an even pace throughout the race, which is the proven best way to run a record time — in my case, a personal best. The thing is, I'm not actually racing! I'm running a glorified time-trial with other runners for company. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? I'm not sure. I think I'd like to RACE! You know, sit on a rival's shoulder before throwing in a mid-race surge to break their spirit. Or run quietly with the pack (that's the local pack of runners I know who are near my ability) for a few kilometres before running a fast 2k split to get away, then surviving until the finish. This is the tactic Ismael Kirui used in the 5000 metres at the Stuttgart World Championships. He jumped away from a pack which included Haile Gebrselassie by running a 4-minute mile, then survived the chasers to win in 13:02.75.
My next major goal race is the "21k" at the Gold Coast. It's actually run over a distance of 21.0975 kilometres (13.109416 miles), but apparently the correct distance is too long to fit on the T-shirt. I'll be trying to run an M50 PB — 1:40:47 or faster, and probably use the Ryan Hall even-pacing method. There will be shorter races before then, both on the track and over the country. I'd like to be game enough to sometimes try Kirui, Merga, Steve Prefontaine, or Ron Clarke tactics in those races. In the next days and weeks various on and off-line friends will be running marathons in London, California, Oregon, Kentucky, New Zealand, the Netherlands and Canberra. Good luck to all!