Tuesday, April 12, 2011 5:48:55 AM
Map: Reches Hatotachim (first leg)Map: Reches Hatotachim (second leg)Map: Reches Hatotachim (third leg)
Mapmaker: Z.Liscinsky P.Matula
I had just read an interesting article on general sports (Golf, Soccer and Basketball) that discussed the topic of mental blocks. I think I might be suffering from that exact symptom as head to head individual relays go. This was my second individual relay training in the past 4 weeks and I lost my head again on the first leg (my first time can be seen at this link
. This time I was leading the way to control 5 and then had two catastrophic mistakes which made me lose 4 minutes. Control 5 can be explained by misreading the control description (A knoll was in fact a pile of stones) but my major mistake was on the way to control 6. I was so eager to correct my ways that I stormed down the hill only to find myself way to the west.
Control 2 in the next leg was also a mistake created by my eagerness to close down on the runner before me. Only once I relaxed (from control 3 of the second leg to the end of the third) I managed to take 3 minutes off the clock.
In sports psychology there's a phenomenon called "instant Amnesia" that allows the sportsman to forget his last mistake (or success) and pull out his best performance at every moment. This was spoken about Tiger Woods, but the same applies here. Mistakes can happen when we dwell in our mistakes, when we dwell in our success, when we are broken down and when we are in the lead. Some say that it's best to be second coming into the final bend without the pressure of being first, but that's exactly the same problem I just described.
Solving the problem shouldn’t be by trying to be second, but by focusing again and again and again, no matter what happened before. "Instant Amnesia", that's the trick.
Saturday, December 4, 2010 2:30:55 PM
Mapmaker: Daniel Griff
Today was the Israeli orienteering championships. The event was festive on the one hand and sad on the other, since no-one knows how to react while the horrific fire is still burning in the north of Israel.
Going back to the orienteering side of things, I ran the first leg of my threesome (3.7 km each) and had a pretty good day. The terrain was sand dunes with many spots of very detailed bushes. I prepared for delicate orienteering and fast pace but still managed to mess up my way to the first control. While crossing a non-detailed area, I lost my confidence when I reached green bushes. I was sure the race is lost (1 minute mistake on the first control in a fast pace relay competition). I decided to regain my nerves and continued only to discover that reality was far from my imagination. My competitors were only seconds ahead and by control 3 I was in the lead. I had no other problems for the rest of the race. Minor mistakes in controls 10 and 11 were exceptions in an otherwise clear route.
My lesson is to never lose hope during orienteering. We are always running against the clock, not knowing what our other competitors are doing or what is considered a "bad mistake". The theory of relativity works during the race, since a mistake could feel like 20 minutes (when it was only 20 seconds) or 10 seconds (while we were running around the control for 1 minute). We can always hope that the mistake was small and the competitor is doing worse.
I was the first of three, and the overall result was first place for us: me, Alexey Marchenko
and Omer Regev
. The club was also successful-finishing second overall.
Saturday, November 20, 2010 3:10:54 AM
Event: Ma'agarei Menashe South
Mapmaker: Ziv Neumann
The annual Israeli relay championship is approaching (2 weeks time) and training has started for the event. Although the championships are club oriented, rarely are the club trainings for it closed to outsiders. Yesterday, for example, Technion-Carmel club organized an interesting first-leg training with aproximately 40-50 participants from all the differnt clubs.
The aim was to work on decision making as a relay starter. The training had 3 stages, each stage ranged between 4-6 legs (1.5-2 km) and had a mass start. The adranline from mass starts is something that you can't find in orienteering races; Chasing a competitor or being chased from the get-go and still trying to focus.
The only problem was the thorny terrain. Parts of the time I was too busy trying to push my way through the bushes to actually work on my orienteering skills. My main problems were leg 1 in stage 1 and leg 6 in stage 2 (the first leg in both). In the first leg, I rushed out of the start, straight into the green without halting, and saw to my surprise everyone run easily paced around it. The 6th leg was supposed to be open terrain with distinct bushes, but was also more or less the same as before. I learnt my lesson in the third stage and detoured around the green on leg 12 (A person has to learn from his mistakes).
My conclusion from the practice is that my first leg decision making requires a lot of polishing (I have to stop stampeding out of the mass start).
Saturday, October 30, 2010 7:12:30 PM
Event: Mitzpe Modi'in
Mapmaker: Ziv Neuman, Oded Verbin
Yesterday my club organized a doubles-relay event. Each runner had to run 2 courses of 1.7 km each (4 courses amongst the 2 runners) as a relay event. Each team was given an age and gender factor based on the members in order to make the race slightly more interesting (I will discuss age and gender factors in a future post).
I decided to run the event with my wife Yael. I was the 1st and 3rd runner, while she was the 2nd and finisher. The attached map includes only my courses. The first course was fast but a little sloppy. I made mistakes in controls 4 and 5 but finished the course 2nd (10.10 minutes, aprox. 1 minute and a bit after the first one to finish). My second course was much better, taking 8.50 minutes. The pace was good and I enjoyed a quick run and a nice exercise.
What I take from today is mainly the fact that sometimes it's nice to enjoy an event just for the sake of having a nice day with Yael.