Get access to everything we publish when you sign up for Outside+.
Regardless if it’s your first or fifty-first race, you are probably like me and still get anxious and worried about race day. What if you start too fast? What if you don’t run the time you want? What if you do something wrong or make a running faux-pas?
Take a deep breath and relax. It’s OKAY to do some things, even if they aren’t necessarily the best decisions or if they technically break some of the so-called running commandments. (Who makes these up anyway?) Life and racing is about living and learning, right?
Here are some of the things that are OKAY to do on race day.
- It’s OKAY to cry at the finish. And at multiple points along the course.
- It’s OKAY to spend way too much money on race photos.
- It’s OKAY to put on some makeup and fix your hair. Because: selfies and #3.
- It’s OKAY to wear the race shirt even when everyone tells you it’s bad luck. It’s not, trust me.
- It’s OKAY to get caught up in the race excitement and go out too fast. It will hurt later on in the race but you’ll survive!
- It’s OKAY to walk. Whether it’s through a water stop, up a hill or for the remainder of the race. Hold your head up high and remember that walking is better than not even trying.
- It’s OKAY to decide you really want to wear that new skirt on race day. Or shorts. Or shirt. Or all of the above.
- It’s OKAY to curse running and your decision to run multiple times throughout the race. But I can almost guarantee that by the time you wake up the next day, you’ll be thinking about the next race.
- It’s OKAY to get competitive and want to pass that guy or girl in front of you.
- It’s OKAY to want to run the race for the post-race beer or brunch. I’ve done this and it’s 100% worth it.
- It’s OKAY to be disappointed about how you ran. But take it from me: there is always another race!).