If you’re a runner, want to be a runner or thinking about becoming a runner, it’s time to consider signing up for a race. If you’re not a runner, never want to be a runner or cannot run, that’s okay, too. You can still sign up for a race for fun or the experience. For the purposes of this article, I’m speaking specifically to those that can and are currently running or want to be running.
If you are currently running – whether you just started or you’ve been running a while – I encourage you to sign up for a race. It can be a 5k, 10k, half marathon, full marathon or ultra, find an organized running event, plop down some money and write it on your calendar. In pen. Here are five reasons why.
1. It Gives You a Goal With A Deadline
Goals are good. It gives you something to work for and a reason to get your butt out of bed on those days you really don’t feel like working out or going for a run. It also gives you a deadline so that you won’t have any excuse to skip your run. Signing up for a race will help you stay motivated. I also recommend you come up with a time goal so that you have something specific to aim for.
2. You’ll Push Yourself Harder
Signing up for a race will give you a “why.” On those days that you just don’t want to put forth any effort, you’ll have a reason to push harder because you have to be able to perform on race day. I’ve found that if I don’t have a race I’m training for, I get bored and start only giving partial effort or skipping workouts completely. When I’ve signed up for a race and set a solid time goal for myself, I mentally focus in on the goal and go the extra mile (literally).
3. You’ll Get A Sense Of Accomplishment
It’s an incredible – I mean, nothing else like it INCREDIBLE – feeling you get when you cross (or hobble) over the finish line. It’s even better when you beat your PR (or goal time). Even if for most of the race, you are wondering why the heck you signed up, after crossing that finish line, I guarantee you’ll soon be researching the next race. Accomplishing the goal you’ve set is addicting and very motivating.
After my first half marathon – which was very painful – I said never, ever, ever, ever again. I chanted it throughout the entire race and afterward…for about 3 hours until I got it in my head that I wanted to run a sub 2 hour half marathon. Two and a half years later, I’ve run a full marathon, a few more half marathons, and have set a goal to qualify for the Boston Marathon. This from a girl who hated running.
4. Be A Part of The Community
There’s a camaraderie among runners that is inspiring. They are some of the nicest people who are willing to help you, encourage you and push you during training and even on the race course. Weekend mornings are typically when most runners crank out their long run and so bright and early as you train, you’re likely to pass by a smiling, waving, head nodding fellow runner who literally knows your pain!
As you run the race, you’ll not only hear the spectators with signs cheering you on, but fellow racers will often shout messages of encouragement. During my first half marathon, I didn’t think I could make it to the end; I began walking the last 2 miles and all around me, the other races gave me words of support, encouraging me to keep on going.
5. It’s a Lot of Fun, And You Get A Medal
Races are fun. It’s an adrenaline rush, and you get a medal and beer at the end. What’s not great about all those things? Convince a friend to sign up with you. Not only will it be more fun with your friend or friends there running beside you, but you will all have the same goal, can motivate each other, and even train together.
Conclusion and Surf City Marathon Discount
So what are you waiting for? Find a race in your area to sign up for. I highly recommend my hometown race – Surf City Marathon (or Half Marathon) in Huntington Beach, CA. It’s one of the most beautiful races with an ocean view and flat course. People from all over the country travel to run Surf City, and I don’t blame them!
You can register for the race here and save 10% off the Surf City Half Marathon or Surf City Full Marathon registration price with the code: SCMHO10