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Common Fears About Running Races


Updated May 18, 2014

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Fear: I won't be able to run the whole time.
Reality: I've never heard of a road race that will disqualify someone for walking. In fact, during most races I've run in or watched, I've seen at least a few people walking at one point. So if you plan to run/walk your race or think you may need a walking break, don't sweat it. You'll be in good company. If you're really concerned that you'll be the ONLY person taking a walking break, look for a fun run that's walker-friendly.

If you've done the training for your race distance and you really want to be able to run the whole race, follow these tips to make sure you don't go out too fast in the beginning and end up having to walk to the end:

  • Try to make sure you're in the correct starting position. Bigger races will have signs or corrals to designate runners' pace per mile. Don't start yourself with faster runners because you'll most likely try to keep up with them.
  • Deliberately run your first mile slower than you plan to run the final one. It's tough to do, since you'll most likely feel really strong in the beginning. But you'll appreciate it at the end, when you still have enough energy to run to the finish line.
  • Start your race at a comfortable pace and make sure you check your watch at the first mile marker. If you're ahead of your anticipated pace, slow down. It's not too late to make pace corrections after just one mile.

More: Can I Walk During My Runs?
Tips for Your Walking Breaks

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