Track season has finally started and the running club continues to train through the cold, wintery Ohio months. Every track runner has that one event that they are the most dedicated to – their favorite race that consumes most of their passion in the spring season. Here our club officers share what their favorite track event is and why:
Question: What is your favorite track event and why? Tell about an experience you’ve had with that event.
John: My favorite track event would be the 3k/5k. The 3200m was always my favorite event in high school along with the 5k in cross country. So coming into college, these two events were the closest that I could experience. I find pacing in both races to come naturally to me, and I am definitely a distance runner at heart. I prefer not to run in 800 and mile, as both are too short for my taste. It’s always a great feeling for me to catch and pass runners that went out too fast. It gives me momentum and motivation to keep going lap after lap.
Jack: 10k: The longer the race the better I runner I become, so the 10k is my best race. Many people say the 10k is the most boring race but I feel it is the most challenging. You have to be very mentally tough to run the 10k on the track and it takes a lot of training. Talent alone can make you a fast runner for many shorter races but the runners who run the 10k have put many miles to prepare. My best experience in the 10k was when I broke my 5k PR from high school twice in the same event.
Rita: My favorite track race is definitely the 3k. Although I usually like longer distances, the 3k is a lot of fun because you still have to be fast. I love that it’s not only a test of speed but also endurance–the training can be tough but always worth it! My most memorable experience running the 3k is from freshman year. It was my first race ever in college and I accidentally finished a lap short (oops!). Now every time I run it I have to have someone at the finish line counting my laps for me.
Tom: 800m : Its just the right mix of speed and endurance. If you have only one or the other you’ll either be gapped in the beginning or passed at the end. Its a perfect blend of tactics, foot speed, guts, and chaos. It takes a crazy person to run the 800m, which is exactly why I love it.
Mark: Definitely the marathon on a track. Its not too long, or too short and requires just the right mix of endurance and insanity. As a slow starter, the distance is especially great as you could get lapped and still come back to win. In addition to all of this, the race is so prestigious, that some have begun to speculate on how fast a tiger might be able to complete it.
Ryan: The mile is my favorite track event. The distance is perfect: not too short and not too long. In high school I focused on the mile during track season and learned through trial and error when to surge and when to kick it in towards the end. I like how dynamic the race is during the four laps and how I’m able to surprise myself every time I step on the starting line.
Mary: My favorite track event is definitely the 3200. I’ve always been a distance runner mentally and physically. I love training for half marathons and full marathons, so when it comes to track season I’ve always gone for the longest event possible. Running 3200 meters on a track is different than running on a cross country course or on the roads; you really can use the laps to your advantage to get into a rhythm and to focus on pacing yourself each lap. At track meets, most people think those 2-milers are crazy because our race seems to go on forever compared to the other track events, and I love being one of the crazies.
Jess: The longest possible race offered! I would have to say the 3200 since that’s the longest I’ve done on the track but i bet I would love the 5k if I had the chance. Since I’ve turned into a marathoner, the thought of anything faster than the 3200 sounds awful. I enjoy the endurance and the mental toughness it takes to finish.
Morgan: 2-mile/3200: For me, the 800 & mile are too short. The 2 mile allows me to get into a pace, a rhythm and really focus on competing against others. It’s the test of the true distance runner. I’ll never forget in High School racing the 2 mile in a complete blizzard at one meet when every other event got cancelled because of the conditions. The 2 milers were the only ones to still compete and it showed our true dedication and toughness.
Rachel Hahn: I have not really raced on the track much since high school and have instead focused on long races off the track, but the 4×800 will always be special to me. It is a completely different feeling than racing an individual event. I love working hard with a group and then all coming together as a team on the track and competing. It is a great bonding experience, even if in reality everyone hates that actual distance of the race.
Zach: I really enjoy the mile even though I’m more of a longer distance guy. The mile to me compared to other cross country and road races seems fast and short, and when most people think of track they think “fast and short” so it fits the bill in my eyes. Those laps go by very quick and even though I’m not the greatest at it and the 5:00 barrier is just barely out of my grasp I still really like the mile.
Will: The race I enjoy most is definitely the 400 hurdles. I know I don’t get much practice at them and should probably focus on something that I’m better at. However, for me, there’s nothing more freeing than hurdling. The adrenaline rush as you attack each hurdle is so exhilarating that I don’t care how tired I am at the end of the race. It might not be my best event, but I enjoy it so much I never want to give it up!
Regan: My favorite event is the mile for a plethora of reasons.
#1. I’m 58% confident I could beat Jack Schlabig in it.
#2. I ran the 3k once and John Lin almost beat me.
#3. Moderation is for cowards, training for the mile forces you to focus on both endurance and speed like no other race can.
#4. I’m a busy guy. Running around in circles for more than five minutes? Ain’t nobody got time for that.
#5. Steeplechase is fun, until your shorts get wet and you end up on YouTube.