tenet (ten' it), noun: a principle, doctrine, or belief held as truth

Welcome to my blog! Here I will share some of my thoughts on horn playing and teaching, which I think about a lot, and maybe some other things, too. Since my job (which thankfully, allows me to do a lot of playing and teaching) keeps me very busy, as does my wonderful family, I may not write frequently. My goal will be quality, not quantity!

Please share your comments.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Recital vs. Road Race

I'm such a bad blogger!  It's been 6 months since my last post!  (I realize the date above says February, but that's just when I started the draft - the publishing date is June 12, 2009)  But, I've had several ideas started as drafts, and hopefully over the summer I can be more productive.  Thanks to John Ericson for giving me a little nudge over lunch at the IHS workshop in Macomb.  If you haven't looked at his blog, it's WAY better than mine!

In May of 2008, I took up running for fitness.  I still consider myself a beginner.  In my typical fashion when getting into a new interest, I've been reading a lot about running over the past year.  One of my favorite resources is runnersworld.com.  If you're into running, and you haven't looked at runnersworld.com, you MUST check it out!  They have an unbelieveable amount of information about all things running-related.  For a long time, I didn't subscribe to the magazine, because they had so much great stuff on the web!  Finally, I gave in and subscribed, because it was only $1 an issue.

One interesting thing I've picked up on is that runners seem to run harder in a race than they ever do in training.  I understand giving that extra effort on race day, but the distance shouldn't be anything new, right?  For a lot of marathoners, the longest training run they ever do is 20 miles.  A marathon is 26.2 miles - no wonder so many people say those last 6 miles are so hard!
I think of a recital as a marathon of sorts.  It can be very tiring physically and mentally.  But I wouldn't dream of going onstage without having "covered the distance"several times in training.  

I don't recommend doing anything on stage that you haven't practiced A LOT!  

In fact, I believe in "over-preparing"--by skipping intermission in my trial run-throughs, or getting to the end of the program, then practicing some more--just so I know that I can finish strong on the performance, even when the nerves are in high gear.

Now, I've never run a marathon, so I don't know firsthand what it feels like.  But, if I were a serious marathoner, I'd want to know that I could run 30 miles if I had to, so that I could toe the starting line on race day with complete confidence that I can cover the 26.2 miles that lie ahead.

Of course, most marathon runners are amateurs, just doing it for the thrill and the finisher's medal.  I have much more at stake when I play a recital - I'm "going for the gold!"

It's also important to remember that there are no style points in running - all that matters is that you finish the course and do it in as little time as possible.  You can't "limp across the finish line" of your recital - that would be a terrible way to end!

May you always finish strong!