Ohmygosh. First of all, I just have to say that your blog is the most inspiring running blog that I’ve ever come across. I love reading your recaps of your races because ever since I signed up for the San Francisco 5k, I’ve been freaking out about it because I’ve never run a race before. :) I was also wondering if you had any pointers for a first time racer? Thank you so much for creating your blog! <3

Wow! I am embarrassingly late in responding to such a nice message! Thank you so much for your kind words.

I wrote a post on my other blog about my favorite parts of any race day that might help you get an idea of what the race will be like, and also help you get excited! Read it here: Race day.

And my tips for your first race are:

– Don’t start out too fast. Start at a comfortable pace until you find your groove, and save your energy for a speedy last mile or half-mile.

– Figure out which side of the course is the “inside” (left or right) and stick to it – for example, if the course is around a lake, stay as close to the water as you can. You’ll run a shorter race and get a faster time!

– Avoid weaving around people, as that’ll make you run a longer race and slow you down. I usually line up with the pace group that runs a little faster than me to avoid passing/weaving around slower people at the start.

– Don’t be ashamed to walk if you need to. Pull off to the side of the course to get out of others’ way and walk quickly/give yourself a pep talk, then resume running.

– Finish strong! Tell yourself, “There’s only XX distance left, and THEN I can rest!” Smoke that finish line, smile and savor the moment. You’ll absolutely love it.

Best of luck to you!

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