Grant Cunningham has a really good recent post titled “Meaningless Increments of Precision”. His point: don’t let small amounts of time become too important in your training – there are MUCH more important things to work on!
I had to smile when I read his post last week because he and I seem to often think alike. I have had an article in to American Handgunner for a while (who knows when it’ll be published?) titled “Measuring What’s Important“. There I argue that standards, including times, are important, but should not be obsessed over. Here’s an early look at the paragraph in that article that dovetails with Grant’s:
To a top competitor who wins matches (and purses) by hundredths of a second, obsessing over minute fractions of a second is appropriate (and profitable). To us regular folks though, I suggest that we try and aim for windows of time. Take, for example: drawing without concealment and hitting an 8-inch plate at seven yards. This is a standard drill, and I am pretty happy when I can do it between 1.3 and 1.5 seconds. This is, for most ordinary people, a “good” time. An “excellent” time might be between 1.0 and 1.3 seconds, while a superb time might be less than a second. Likewise a “fair” time might be 1.6 to 2.0 seconds and a poor time over 2 seconds. Vary the size of the plate and the distance, or add in concealment, and these windows would shift around, but the point is that aiming for windows of time is probably a better practice for most of us than obsessing about shaving a tenth or a twentieth of a second off of our good runs.