Pacer Or Chaser?


Which Would You Rather Be?

Pacer or Chaser?  No, not a basketball team or even a car but how you would describe yourself as a runner.

So do you ever find yourself driving and see a car with a 26.2 sticker on it and you try to catch it and pass  it?  Walking into the grocery store, and you feel yourself racing the person next to you to get in the store?

Last night as I did one of my dreaded taper runs I was trying to keep it at an easy pace and then it happened, I began the chase.  I saw this women the other day running in the neighborhood and she was a pretty fit girl and her pace was a good pace.  I turned the corner today, and saw her 2 blocks away from me, and my first thought was “GO GET HER” and I ran as hard as I could without tripping over cracked sidewalks..before I knew it she turned a corner and I lost her. Ugh. Next time.

My name is Karen. I am a chaser. I have gotten worse when racing as I pick someone in the crowd and this will be the person I chase and hope to pass and then I will pick someone new. I name my people I chase. Turquoise shirt girl, The waterboy, and numerous other names that just pop into my head that remind me to keep them in my vision and pass them.  The last race I ran I actually chatted with the 2 girls that I was chasing, and we laughed about it because they were doing it as well.  I walked away from them and another person came to me and said she was chasing me down the whole way.. I am not alone.

I have tried to be a pacer, and when I ran with a training group, the pace leader kept telling me to SLOW down and stay with group but when I am in a group setting – my competing side kicks in and I wanna beat all these people. Of course – I know I should be slowing down as this is just a training run right?

Race day – I am not going to pace. I am not going to talk or socialize during the run. I am going to PUSH my body. I have learned I can push harder during races, and not hold back and chase as many people as I can.  I may not win, but I might just pass one guy.. and chick him!  I used to think I couldn’t go faster on runs, and then I decided – why not?  Go Fast – and I did, and I didn’t collapse afterwards and got my pancakes. Will I always be a chaser – we shall see when the ultra-marathon training kicks in, but for now I will try to catch as many people as possible..maybe you!


Are you a chaser or a pacer?  Do you race people into stores?

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  1. katie says:

    I’m a chaser but would probably enjoy life a lot more if I was a pacer :)
    katie recently posted..wordless wednesdayMy Profile

  2. Matt Oravec says:

    I am a pure mental head case. I am a pacer first and a chaser second. If someone dares run faster than me, you bet your butt I will run faster than them AND drop them.

    Case and point on my hill repeats last night, was on my 3rd repeat (after an hour of hills on the bike) and this guy starts running up “my hill”. Granted he was fresh and just started, but he passed me. I kind of wigged out and refused to be passed… even though my goal was easy pace up the hill. I passed him and made sure he didn’t pass me again.

    I have issues.
    Matt Oravec recently posted..Ready… Aim… Fire!!!My Profile

  3. Maria Simone says:

    No doubt about it: I’m a chaser. It’s my FAVORITE pastime. I select people, one by one, focus in until I pass them, and then I pick another person. I find that this game is especially helpful in the later miles of a marathon or Ironman.

    glad to know I’m not the only one…
    Maria Simone recently posted..Drinking the X-Day Kool AidMy Profile

  4. Hahaha oh my, I’m a chaser too! Everyone gets a nickname and I hunt them down! It’s a hard habit to break when trying to keep a set (i.e. mellow pace). Come race day though, everyone in front of me better watch out! Sometimes when running, I imagine the person I’m chasing is pulling me and that keeps me going. Whatever it takes right?
    Rose @ Eternal Recess recently posted..19 days till Ironman California 70.3My Profile

  5. In all honesty, I just run my own race. And there is no specific reason for this other than it never occurred to me to do anything else.

  6. misszippy says:

    On race day, if it seems doable, I’m going to chase, for sure! But on training days, I am pretty good at doing what I need to do. Today was an easy recovery day for me. Like you, I saw someone up ahead and was tempted to go. But then I remembered the hard, hilly 10-miler I’ll be doing w/ friends tomorrow and decided it was more important to run that well than catch the guy ahead of me, so I reeled myself in. Great topic!
    misszippy recently posted..Enough already!My Profile

    • Karen says:

      Thank you.. I am trying to be more a pacer..and will learn to slow it down, except of course into Target..

  7. Jeff Irvin says:

    When I first started running and cycling a few years ago the chaser would have been an apt description of me.

    Now, I have more specific goals and training pace matters. If it is a recovery run day then that is what I do — even if an old guy using a walker passes me (-:

    Races are a completely different mindset. All chase all the time!
    Jeff Irvin recently posted..Ironman Mont-Tremblant Training Week #1My Profile

    • Karen says:

      I had several people pass me when I was doing HR training.. and I went nuts.. and HR kept going up… someday I will learn

  8. CTER says:

    Training for Vegas I was all chaser all the time. Now that I have learned my lesson from that and from training for Ironman I am in agreement with Jeff in that I need to train for best results and then after that come race day I am all out until I can’t go all out anymore.
    CTER recently posted..Pacer Or Chaser?My Profile

    • Karen says:

      I believe a wise man from NY told me pick someone out and REEL them in and then pick out a NEW person..and it stuck. So happy I met that guy.

  9. How fun to read a post by you Karen! I never have before! I am not a chaser or pacer. I am a survivor…I am just trying to survive the race in one piece! I am hoping someday to be a chaser!
    Katie@Will Race for Carbs recently posted..Things- The March EditionMy Profile

  10. Karen says:

    There is more in my tab on the site.. if you dare – Karen’s Korner!

  11. Laura says:

    I am still trying to figure out this whole racing thing but I am more a chaser…not a chasee.
    Laura recently posted..The GSD weekendMy Profile

    • Karen says:

      well last nite when it was 80% humidity and hot.. I was a OMG do I really like to run this much person.. all depends on the days I guess!

  12. Jen says:

    I am definitely becoming more of a chaser now that I’ve been working at upping my speed. For the first few years of this running journey I was definitely the girl who always got passed. It always bummed me out. The competitor in me hates that but I was where I was…

    Yesterday, during my last mile of a six mile run, I saw two girls ahead of me and I HAD to pass them. So dumb. Just a training run and hot as heck for March…

    But I did it. I smoked both of them and, in fact, was in my car and driving from the park as the first girl was catching up! ;)

    My first mile yesterday? 10:28. that last mile? 9:08… teehee…

    My last half and 10K I found myself playing chase that one and pass – a lot. Psychologically makes me feel accomplished to go from once being the one always left in the dust to being able to go for it.
    Jen recently posted..I’m gonna be on the TODAY show!My Profile

  13. Good luck this weekend…Puerto Rico has been all over the news the last few days since the primary is this weekend, forgot how nice it is there.
    Patrick Mahoney recently posted..Budgie – Huge In TexasMy Profile

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