We recently asked our regular RunThrough runners what their top tips to any new runners on race day would be, and specifically what advise they would give to anyone attending a RunThrough race for the first time!! So here is a round up of what they collectively said...
- One of the most important things highlighted by almost every runner we asked was to arrive in good time. There is nothing worse than rushing to get to the event and then not having any time to get settled and ready to run. Try an give yourself plenty of time by arriving at least 30 minutes before the race start time - DON'T FORGET that you will need to collect your race pack and drop your bag off in the baggage drop, oh and make that last trip to the toilet!
- Something we often forget.. warm up! Now you have arrived in plenty of time there is no excuse not to do a little warm up in the corner, or join in with the warm up at the event. You don't want to end up injured at your first race because you didn't warm up. You are also more likely to settle into your race pace and stride a lot sooner if you have warmed up which means you can enjoy the race a lot more.
- Don't be shy, be yourself and relax! We know this is a lot easier said than done when you have the dreaded pre-race nerves and don't know anyone else but you are guaranteed to improve your experience of the event if you relax and open up to those around you. Whether you smile at other runners within the event village, have a chat with one of the marshals (they don't bite) or introduce yourself to the runner next to you at the start line - you are not alone and remember you already have common ground with everyone there. You might surprise yourself and soon find you have a big group of running friends happy to see you at every race!
- Another really important point is to always run your own race!! When on the start line it can be easy to head off super quick and get carried along the runners around you but be careful, not everyone runs the same pace and you don't want to use up all your energy in the first kilometer. Listen out for the estimated finish times to be called out when lining up and place yourself in a realistic spot - it is always better to go with a slower group if you are unsure. Once you get to a comfortable stride stick with it, there may be people pass you and you may well pass others but sit at your pace and enjoy the race. Whatever time you finish in there will be marshals to cheer you all the way to the finish and other runners to support you as you run round.
- Enjoy it! Also easier said than done when nervous but there is so much to enjoy and a lot of fun to be had on race days. Feel proud for getting to the start line, embrace the race and then feel 10 time more proud as you cross the finish line. High-5 marshals on the way round, jump or wave for the photographer on course (you are going to want the fab race photo to show all your friends and family), thank the marshals at the finish line for your medal and join the post race chats as you pick up your well earned flapjack and post race snacks!
We really could go on and on and make it top 10, or even 50 tips for race days but these are our top 5 and the ones we think you really should bear in mind as you head to your first race.
If you have your own questions or just want to talk all things running join our incredible online running community on the RunThrough UK Chat Facebook Group HERE