Non-runners who read my blog often ask me what a PB is. I tell them that it’s a Personal Best – when you run your fastest time over a specified distance to gauge improvements. They look at me oddly as if, well, what does that mean?
Funny thing is that when I listen to my running buddies, it appears to me that most of them are on a sole (excuse the pun) mission to increase their running speed and get a PB. (Hey, wait a minute? So it’s not just me?)
Achieving a PB is the ultimate benchmark for most runners. It’s as if this is the signal that they are getting better as runners. But I do wonder sometimes if speed is the ultimate goal?
Is your best always measured in terms of time?
Here’s where I’m going with this …
I’ve been busy at work refreshing my Key Performance Areas (KPAs) for 2012. A new process has been implemented and apart from the normal ‘doing your job KRAs’, there’s a new section called “Stretch goals”. This is meant to be areas where I manage to perform additional tasks above and beyond the normal KRA’s. But the measurement required to see whether or not I have achieved this is the difficult part.
You see, it’s not like running where I am able to record PB’s which indicate ‘best’. I need something more concrete because I can’t just use a PB (time) to indicate greatness for everything I do. The measure has to be tangible and measureable and different for each task.
But yet, in running, it’s okay to just use time. It’s okay that getting faster and faster is the ultimate measure of improvement.
I think this is sometimes where running fails. Because runners have become obsessed with PB’s that even all their “Stretch” goals are based on time/pace/speed. Are runners also training for goals of fitness levels, endurance or overall post-race recovery…or anything else?
I do realise that all these contribute to better times and faster running. But is there an alternative measure than the PB? *just a thought*…