40 Thoughts Every Runner Has When Chasing A PR

The inner thoughts of a speeding runner are just so hilarious.


Once you’ve been running for a while and have a few races under your belt, you probably feel pretty comfortable with your pace and know what your body is capable of. But then a strange thing happens—you start to wonder if maybe you could go a little faster, pick up the pace a bit, shave off a few seconds. It’s official- you’ve been bit by the PR bug. You start itching to set a new personal record and dream about crossing the finish line, your speedy time in flashing lights above you. Before long your life revolves around getting enough rest and running enough miles in an effort to hit that magic number. Then race day arrives and although your body is more than ready, your mind takes over and puts you through an emotional roller coaster. No matter the distance of your race, attempting to reach a PR is mentally taxing and can leave you just as exhausted as the physical aspect of the race. Here’s a sampling of the thoughts you might have on the big day:

  1. This is it! Race day! So so SO excited!
  2. Oh my God oh my God oh my Goddddd.
  3. Why doesn’t my GPS watch have a signal yet?
  4. There are so many people here. Please let some of them be slower than me so I don’t get discouraged.
  5. Also please let some of them be faster than me so I’m motivated to keep going.
  6. Seriously why isn’t my watch working??
  7. That girl has the same sneakers as me. We must be soulmates. Or SOLE mates.
  8. Hahahaha.
  9. Omg that was so not funny, I’m waaaay too nervous.
  11. Holy crap we’re starting.
  12. Wow this is so easy, I am absolutely flying right along. Outta my way, slowpokes! PR here I come!
  13. Mile one, down. Time check! Wow, I’m way ahead of my goal pace. Like a gazelle, I am!
  14. A stupid gazelle. I’m going to crap out halfway through if I keep this up. Stick to your goal pace, dummy.
  15. Ok, slow and steady. More turtle, less gazelle.
  16. Much better pace. I feel like I’m running hard but not too hard. I must be right on pace. Time for another time check.
  17. Damnit, too slow. Move it.
  18. Time check.
  19. Ahhh, too fast. Slow down!
  20. Time check.
  21. Nailed it. Call me Goldilocks because I am just right.
  22. Time check.
  23. What?! How can I be off again???
  25. I should just take off this stupid watch. I’ve been training so hard I bet I’m in tune with my body’s pace without even needing to double check.
  26. Yeah, no.
  27. I need to focus on something else. Let’s people watch.
  28. Well hello, attractive stranger. Why don’t I just run beside you and admire your…form?
  29. Can you imagine if I met my future spouse this way? We just fell in sync during a race and crossed the finish line together, hand-in-hand, our love the ultimate prize? What a story for the grandkids.
  30. No! What is wrong with you?! Focus.
  31. Two miles to go. Maybe I can just count out the rest of my strides to stay focused and on pace.
  32. How many strides do I take per mile? 100? 1000?? Okay 5280 feet in a mile, say I cover four feet in a stride, so that’s like…
  33. Math is so hard.
  34. Home stretch. I think I’m actually on pace to do this! Time to give it everything I’ve got.
  35. Why do my legs suddenly feel like lead? I feel like I’m sprinting through quicksand. Wearing snowpants. Filled with cement.
  36. Must go faster. Need a movie montage in my head. Chariots of Fire! Without Limits! RUN FORREST RUN!
  37. I can see the finish line. No time to check my watch. I feel like I’m running faster than ever though. Like, I’m definitely 10 minutes ahead of my goal.
  38. I am running so so fast. My legs are no longer part of my body. Probably going to win this whole thing.
  39. Yes! Done! Official time is….8 seconds faster! Personal recordddddddd!!!
  40. Ok I could definitely do that again 10 seconds faster. When’s my next race??