Full And Half Marathon Race Day Worries
You’re training for a half marathon (or full marathon). The nerves are starting to set in. Does it matter if you can’t run the full distance?
Running a marathon or half marathon should be a positive experience. You put the work in, train as hard as you can, and accomplish something amazing. But many women experience nerves, self-doubt and worry about their race performance.
So let’s look at two common worries you might have about your upcoming race. Do I need to run the full distance in training? And does it matter if I walk during the race?
Do You Need To Run The Full Distance In Training?
This depends. What are your goals for the race? What has your training consisted of? And – of course – how long is the race distance?
It’s rarely recommended that you run the full 26.2 miles of a marathon in training – so cross that worry off your list!
For half-marathons, more experienced athletes, people chasing a PB, runners who specialise in half-marathons, or folk who have a lot of time to dedicate to training may well choose to run 13 miles or even more a few times in training.
But what if that’s not you? If this is your first half-marathon, if you are running this race for the experience rather than for time, or if you have limited time to train due to family, work or injury – be kind to yourself and ease the pressure. There’s no need to run 13 miles in training. 10 miles (a few times) and 12 miles (once or twice) is absolutely sufficient for you to get round. And if you can’t manage that? Then it’s your call. Either take the pressure off and choose another race, or run/walk it. Either way, you are still a runner!
Does It Matter If You Walk During A Race?
We think: absolutely not. Any running achievement should be celebrated and applauded. You already know how running makes you feel, what a difference it makes to your health and fitness, and how it’s changed you life. Why put extra pressure on yourself?
Of course, if you want to get a race PB or finish in the top 10 of your age-group, you’ll need to run the whole thing. You’ll also need to work on your speed, sprint finish, endurance and race pace.
But if you’re one of the many women who love running, and want to do this race for a very personal achievement, then it doesn’t matter if you run/walk, jog, or even sit and have a little cry half-way through the race! You’re a runner, you are doing this, you’re going to get there. As far as we’re concerned, it doesn’t matter how fast or slow you are. You’re still going to cross that finish line.
Enjoy your races this season. Us runners are an incredible bunch (no matter what speed we go at!)