If you've never detonated...

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Sep 2016
9:56am, 20 Sep 2016
958 posts
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larkim
...how do you know you've ever given your best?

(Having never detonated, I was wondering how close I've ever come to really being at maximal performance in a race. Is this a rational thought process?)
Sep 2016
11:30am, 20 Sep 2016
3451 posts
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chunkywizard
I've never detonated but I have drastically slowed down in the latter part of a race. I think that's a good indication that you went out more aggressively than you should.

I practised at parkrun. you get one chance a week to try stuff like going out at quicker than PB pace, progressive runs, even splits etc. You then can work out, what works, what doesn't and what your max performance is.
Sep 2016
11:50am, 20 Sep 2016
6894 posts
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becca7
This was my best. Small deterioration in pace towards the end but if there had been more than that, especially detonation, it would have been because I messed the earlier part of the race up.
Sep 2016
11:54am, 20 Sep 2016
3488 posts
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Nelly
I don't think you need to detonate to know whether you've given your best, there's other indicators that could be used:-

- heart rate. There's plenty of guidance around on what %-age of max HR is generally sustainable over different distances. Also, look at your HR trace over the duration of the race for any anomalies.

- finishing pace vs effort. If you can't sustain the same pace in the last 10% of the race, or even if your loosing a few seconds a mile, then I'd suggest you're close to your best (on that given day).

- experience. Once you have done a few "flat out" races, you know how you feel at the various race distances.
Sep 2016
12:13pm, 20 Sep 2016
959 posts
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larkim
I'm fairly sure I have got close to my best. There's just always the nagging doubt that you "could do better". I agree that HR and mild pace deterioration are good indicators, but "what if" my max average 171 for a half "could have been" 173, and "what if" I'd pushed on for an extra 15s through miles 6-10 etc etc.

I'm frankly delighted that I've not detonated, and for the sake of the cash spent on race entries, hope I don't on any race day.
Sep 2016
12:39pm, 20 Sep 2016
34525 posts
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Velociraptor
If I get to the end of a race and think, "I'm glad that's finished," rather than, "Pfft, I could go round again," that'll do for me as evidence that I've done my best. If I don't slow down in the last few miles but need to get horizontal once I'm over the line, I know I've paced it right. Detonation is either a learning experience or, in a target race, a big fail.
Sep 2016
12:52pm, 20 Sep 2016
14653 posts
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The Teaboy
5k is good for detonation. If you run your last k too fast, you didn't detonate. Very easy to go off far too fast and pop big-style. As pretty much every 10-year old does every week at Parkrun!
Sep 2016
7:32pm, 20 Sep 2016
382 posts
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Daz Love
Could normally tell on the finish line if you have given all!

I run a 5k parkrun and pretty much fell over the line once! (Still my PB!)

Run the same pace a few months later but got quicker every mile with the final .1 the quickest. After I kept thinking I could have done more and I was 2 seconds from the PB!

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Maintained by larkim
...how do you know you've ever given your best?

(Having never detonated, I was wondering how clo...

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