written by runnergirl training
Sometimes when you run a race you may have the luxury of friends and sometimes you may be flying solo. Both instances have their pros and cons to the racing experience. Check out a few reasons why racing alone can be fun!
No Mindless Chatter
We all know that one person in the running club who somehow manages to maintain the equivalent of an oral dissertation for the entire half marathon! There’s something to be said for some peace and quite. Mental downtime is a great way to problem solve or build confidence in yourself and your capabilities.
Easy to Keep Your Pace
Let’s face it, not every runner excels at pacing. It is a trainable skill but not everyone possesses it. It is nice to find your pace and not need to constantly adjust it to someone who speeds up and slows down. Just set your cruise control and go!
Easy to Move Through the Crowd
Trying to navigate a busy race throng with someone other than just yourself in tow can be tricky. With bumping elbows of other runners and checking over your shoulder before passing it does not leave much time to keep up with friends. It is way easier to glide through the masses by yourself.
Drafting Made Easy
When you are in the slogging-it-out part of the race sometimes it is helpful to conserve energy and draft on a runner. This is accomplished by moving directly or slightly behind them with some distance in case they stop or slow down. You can keep their pace and allow your mind and body to take a slight recovery break. This would be a challenging task if you had friends running on each side of you. No one wants a wall drafting behind them!
Drink and Eat When You Want
I don’t know about you, but when I race I have my hydration and snacks planned out. Stopping at the next 5 water stations kinda messes up my race strategy and mile splits. It also is easy to get a side cramp when stopping here and there along the course. I much prefer to be in control of my water and caloric intake.
All that being said, racing with friends has its pros and cons as does solo racing. If you find yourself in a race as a single participant don’t let it discourage you from having a great race. Let me know some tips that you use in your races!
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