One thing that for me will never go away is that butterfly feeling when you are on the start line. That moment. I have played football most of my life and it was the same when I waited for kick off. It makes you feel a bit sick right? But guess what, it is actually a really good thing.
The feeling is there because you actually care. It means something so don’t let it put you off. I always tell myself in my head that nerves are the same feeling as excitement so… make sure to choose which one is it is going to be today.
On the 19th of September, I left my flat in East London and made my way to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for a 10k race. Not only was this my second ever 10k timed race, but it was my first that I had actually trained for.
As you can see from the title, this race was slightly different and I won’t lie, I quite liked it. As a short person, my normal race prep is staring at the back of someone head and finding the start line by following a crowd because there is no hell on earth I could reach to see it. However… this race, I had a blue bib which meant I had to go to a certain place. I went there quickly and took to a cone two meters behind the person in front. I was pretty smug because all those people that try and sneak to the front had to be sent back (wrong colour bib mate – ha).
RunThroughUK who organised the race did a fantastic job and I can not wait for my next with them in a few weeks. I could lunge in my warm up without tripping over someone. I could take my own water instead of knocking it mid-run and soaking the poor volunteer holding the cup. I also still got the yummy famous flapjack at the end though duh.
So I just wanted to finish with 3 things that (for me) are a must during a race to ensure a great time:
- Talk out loud to yourself with encouragement: Yes you might sound like a crazy person (what’s new for me eh) but there is a lot of science to prove talking up stops you sinking in.
- Make sure the first km is comfortable: give yourself time to settle into your pace, mindset and take it all in. You want to enjoy it after all.
- Cheer everyone else on too: the best thing about running sport is the community so cheer people on, especially the volunteers and those who are struggling because it actually makes you feel cheered you on too.