- A situation involving exposure to danger.
- The possibility that something unpleasant or unwelcome will happen.
- A person or thing regarded as a threat or likely source of danger.
- A possibility of harm or damage against which something is insured.
- The possibility of financial loss.
- Expose (someone or something valued) to danger, harm, or loss.
- Act or fail to act in such a way as to bring about the possibility of (an unpleasant or unwelcome event).
- Incur the chance of unfortunate consequences by engaging in (an action).
I remember times when I have taken risks, and I remember times when I have chosen not to take risks. I have enjoyed the rewards of risk taking, and also dealt with the blow of failure. It’s funny looking back to realize I regretted taking risks that didn’t end well, but also regretted certain instances where I played it safe, opting not to take a risk. Nothing feels better than taking a risk and having it pay off, or realizing that playing it safe was the right choice.
On days that I feel I have nothing to lose, I can push really hard on the bike or run. It is nice sometimes to just push hard without looking at a computer to see the watts, or not looking at the watch while out on a run, worrying about the minute per mile. I like to go to a race course before the event and ride it and/or run it, taking risks to see what I can do without the pressure of being in competition. Seeing how hard I can push, calculating the average watts on the course, the watts it took for a climb or climbs, seeing how fast I can run the course, or how much each hill slows me down on the run, helps me to plan race day.
As I get older though, I like to use a little risk management.
Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling threats to an organization or person.
I can take all the data from these risky rides and runs and build a plan on how to control the risk on race day. With the use of power meters on the bike leg of triathlon or a bike race, I can control the risk of blowing up. I know just what wattage output I can push it on the bike and still have a something for the run. On a bike Time Trial, I know just how much power to push on the first half of the race and how to increase it on the back half.
When I was younger, I could take all the risk I wanted to with picking and choosing races because I recovered faster. There were two summers, not too long ago, that I did three half-ironman distance races within five weeks of each other. As I get older, I use a list for risk management and do sprint and Olympic distance races early in the year, leaving a few weeks off to get ready for a full or half-distance race.
The same is true with training. In my twenties I could do back to back hard training days, and/or add training to my days without having to worry about recovering. Nowadays I have to pay close attention to how I schedule my training. If I know I am going to the State or National Park for some hill training, I know I cannot have high intensity day the day before. I have to prevent the risk of injury. By putting in a recovery day before and after super high intensity days, it allows me to control the risk of injury. Some risks aren’t worth taking.