Begin­ners: Have Fun And Stay Motivated

Be­cause events can help you reach all kinds of goals

Runner's World (UK) - - IN THIS ISSUE - BY JEFF GALLOWAY

How? By rac­ing

ONE OF THE GREAT things about run­ning is that each of us chooses our own des­tiny. We alone de­cide where and when to run. We alone de­cide to race – or not. No one is less of a run­ner if they don’t race. How­ever, there are sev­eral rea­sons you might want to sign up for an event.

TO GET MOTIVATED

If you’re hav­ing trou­ble get­ting out the door, hav­ing a dead­line – in this case, race day – may in­spire you to do the work­outs needed to prop­erly pre­pare. For a 5K, that means run-walk­ing ev­ery other day or so, work­ing up to a weekly long run of at least three miles. If you’re still on the fence, try spec­tat­ing at a lo­cal race: if you could bot­tle the en­ergy you’ll find at the start and fin­ish lines, you could run your car for a year on it.

TO PUSH YOUR­SELF

When run­ners gather at a race, the ex­cite­ment in­spires us to run harder with less per­ceived ef­fort. Af­ter your first race, you’ll prob­a­bly want to go faster. We love to im­prove and races give us an eval­u­a­tion tool.

TO EX­PLORE

If you’re tired of the same old loops, a race in a new lo­ca­tion can help you break out of your rut. You can test the ter­rain and en­joy the scenery, and if you en­joy your­self, you can re­turn for a reg­u­lar run in the fu­ture.

TO SUP­PORT A CAUSE

Many small 5Ks ex­ist to raise money. In gen­eral, th­ese events sup­port new rac­ers, but there is a wide range of qual­ity in such races. A lo­cal run­ning store can tell you which are man­aged best, but if a cause is truly dear to your heart, you may not care that its ‘5K’ is not pre­cisely 3.1 miles or that or­gan­is­ers run out of snacks be­fore the last fin­ish­ers ar­rive.

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