5k running: What if I come last? Should I enter?

A wheelbarrow race in Grant Park, Chicago
Image via Wikipedia

Yes. I would definately enter

I represented GB in Age Group Duathlon and genuinely was worried that I may well have come last.

As it turned out I wasn’t.

There’s always someone somewhere that will be slower than you. You just have to hope they are in the same race!!

But really who cares? Think about it more widely that just from a personal introspection.

So, by the same token, why enter a race if you can easily win it? There is ALWAYS someone somewhere faster in a different race.

Enter a race for geriatric, obese people. You’ll win that. But what’s the point?

What’s really important is you and your personal goals and development.

If you enter a race and come last then at least you beat the people who were afraid to enter.

Musing a little… 

I sometimes do volunteer work for the 5k people at parkrun.com. I run in them as well. But when volunteering you have a chance to step back and watch the runners. What strikes me is that some people doing the 5k in 35 minutes are trying harder than those doing it in 22 minutes. They are pushing their personal limits more. Maybe they’ve just started running, obviously they won’t be brilliant. Again who’s the best? I’d rather have someone who tries harder working for me than a brilliant slacker.

Also look at Age Group grading of your results. You will find that even if you are last you were not technically last. Why? Well, the 18 year old who beat you by 30 seconds was technically slower compared to what he should have done. The age graded results will PROVE THAT beyond doubt. So that way you can have a race and there is always a way for looking at it where no-one came last by one measure or another!

It’s kind of like with kids. We never have losers anymore. Well in the grown up running world we really don’t because really we are not all racing for glory; like in our wider lives we are running for LOTS of reasons, health, fitness, improvement. We’re not all RACING we’re just running. It’s just putting one foot in front of the other after all; just like football is kicking a round (spherical) bit of plastic/leather into a goal.

Anyway get out there and run. Get that time on the board. After a bit of training you will get a PB and another and another and another and another. And then you can bask in your own glory and laugh at the likes of me who put in so much effort agonising for a second or two of improvement once every few months or so. Sounds like I’m the mad one rather than you!!

As someone famous once said “Just do it”

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