Wednesday 22 March 2023

Club Age Graded TT on Tuesday 4 April

Age Graded 5km Time Trial (TT) on Tuesday 4 April Further to the succes of the age graded TT in October last year we have decided to arrange another similar TT on Tuesday 4 April. I have therefore put together some notes on Age Grading for the Club as well as guide lines for this upcoming TT. Firstly the 5Km TT. This will take place on Tuesday 4 April as part of our Seniors weekly Tuesday training sessions coordinated by Gillian Dean. Please meet in the usual place, Kingsmeadow Carpark, at 7pm and we will jog down to the start of the TT which will be at the Eshiels sign on the Tweed Valley Trail. It will be a mass start and the 5km course will follow the Tweed Valley Trail to the turn point at the start of the Cardrona bridge (where there will be a marshal), and then return the same way back to the start point which will complete the 5km. Shown here: It will be crucial to get an exact time. There will be somebody at the finish to take your time (or shout it out) but you may also wish to record it yourself (eg Garmin watch). Please also ensure your DOB is given to the timekeeper. This is important so we can calculate your accurate age graded result. It should be daylight for pretty much the whole time but you may wish to bring a head torch just in case. The course is all tarmac so road shoes or light trail shoes would be OK. Wear warm clothes to jog down to the start. I will calculate the age graded percentage and let you know the results (personally, if you leave me your email address). This is a new way of keeping a track of your progress as well as a fairer way of comparing your fitness with your colleagues, no matter your age or sex. so please come along and give it your support. For background interest I have included below some notes on age grading for runners, as well as the results to date for those that either competed in the last event or have done an individual run and sent me the details. I look forward to seeing you on Tuesday Mike Goddard 07976358024 Age Grading for Moorfoot Club Runners Introduction Most or us will be familiar with age grading for runners through the park run races but I would like to look at how we can use it within the Club environment. From a personal viewpoint I have always been impressed with how some athletic organizations have used age grading in one form or another to provide motivation outwith the elite groups. My personal experience has been within the triathlon community where age grouping (in 5 year blocks) has been extremely successful worldwide. I started some 12 years ago since I needed the motivation to compete against triathletes of my own age (albeit in 5 year blocks which favours those at the beginning of the age block!). I quickly found that I could be competitive and was soon selected to represent GB at the European and World Championships culminating in a silver medal at European level and 4th at world level. Despite the advancing years the motivation to continue competing has been immense and I have qualified for the GB team every year since 2011. There are examples within the running community (and our own Alastair Walker from Hawick is a world champion and world record holder in his own age group). It's a simple biological fact that as we get older we can’t run as fast as we could have when we were younger, and this aging process begins at a pretty young age! But this doesn’t mean we can’t improve and become better runners for our age, or even set new PB’s if we didn’t achieve our full potential in our younger years! However, with the right motivation and training, improved running performances can be achieved long after the prospect of new PB’s has faded away. But how can you tell if your performance is improving when your times are getting slower? This is where Age-Grading comes in. Age-Grading is a simple but very effective method of measuring your performance, making allowances for your age and sex. It gives you a percentage score for each run calculated by comparing the time for your run with times set by world record runners of the same age and sex. Benchmark times are collated, and performance adjustment profiles are produced for various distances and ages for each sex. So why is Age-Grading beneficial? Motivation – Getting slower can be demotivating for runners who are 'past their peak' even if they are running well for their age. So, rather than focusing solely on how fast you are running, it can be more motivating to focus on your Age-Graded performance. Comparing with other Runners - By factoring out age and sex it is possible for two different runners to compare their performance for the same run on even terms, enabling people to compete with each other regardless of age and sex. Long-Term Performance Tracking - Factoring out age enables you to see how good your performance is at any time given expected norms for your age. Using this you can track how your performance has changed over the long-term. For example my PB for 10km when I was 39 years old was 34 min giving an age grading of 81%. I now know that by running 46 min at my current age I would achieve the same age grade of 81%. I could similarly track my half marathon performance and my mile performance. I find this immensely motivating as I now know that my hard work at training can prove to me that I am as competitive for my age as I was then, rather than bemoaning the fact that I cannot run 34 minutes for the 10 km any more! Predicting Race Times - You can use you current Age-Graded percentage as a basis for predicting finish times for races of different distances. Interpreting Age-Grading Scores As Age-Grading scores are based on a comparison with world record times, don't be disappointed if your scores are a long way from 100%; you’ll probably get the most motivation by aiming to improve on your own scores and by comparing your scores with those of your friends. In general over 60% is club class running, over 70% is regional class, over 80% is national class, over 90% is world class (or your garmin is lying!) How do I see age grading being used by Moorfoot? The key of course is to be able to access an accurate and reliable age grading predictor. I have done some research on this and found that the has a good, user friendly calculator. I have joined this site (for the sum of £24 per annum) so can access this calculator at any time. We could also join as a Club but I am not sure of the cost or benefit but can easily find out I am sure. My ideas for Moorfoot are as follows: - we can select some local training/racing routes, and plot them on the goodrunguide (which automatically calculates the flat equivalent distance rather than the measured distance to take into account the hills). - These routes can then be used for a Club competition, either as individuals (who would submit their time) or as a handicap race with the results being based on the age grading scores. - There could be an annual award for the best age grades on the nominated routes, and the most improved based on the previous year. - Individuals could keep a record of their own scores over a period of time and note the changes, or could set an age grade target and train for it. - Individuals could use the calculator to predict their finish times for races of differing distances. These are just a few ideas but all suggestions welcome. Current Club rankings as follows: Age Graded 5km TT Club rankings 22-Mar-23 Age graded position Name Age graded score Recorded time Date Course Distance (flat equivalent) km 1st Jen Misak 75.82% 00:21:05 04/02/23 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 2nd Dean Carr 74.68% 00:19:52 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 3rd Craig Walling 70.40% 00:19:48 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 4th Tim Warner 68.21% 00:25:12 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 5th Pete Caddick 65.56% 00:24:24 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 6th Vicky Morrison 65.43% 00:23:58 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 7th Eilidh Davidson 61.02% 00:24:18 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 8th Sam Laydon 60.27% 00:23:51 25/10/22 Eshiels to Cardrona cycle route 5.13 Mike Goddard 07976358024 22 March 2023