You asked me

Jeff an­swers your ques­tions

Runner's World (UK) - - TRAINING -

Is there a per­fect goal dis­tance for a first-time racer?

The 5K (3.1 miles) is def­i­nitely a doable goal for a be­gin­ner and most ar­eas or com­mu­ni­ties have plenty of op­tions at this dis­tance, the most ob­vi­ous be­ing weekly Parkruns. Pay at­ten­tion to how your goal event is mar­keted: the words ‘fun run’ usu­ally mean the event is un­timed, so if you want to know your of­fi­cial fin­ish­ing time and see how you mea­sured up, choose another race.

What’s the most com­mon mis­take made by first­time rac­ers?

With the ex­cite­ment of the day it’s all too easy to start too fast. To avoid this mis­take en­sure your first mile is your slow­est, with more walk breaks than you usu­ally take (if, in­deed, you take them at all). By not us­ing up too much en­ergy early on, you can en­joy the feel­ing of pass­ing peo­ple at the end with­out sprint­ing. Your goal should be to fin­ish cross the line with a big smile and a great sense of achievement.

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