You Signed up…Now What?

The hardest part is over, sort of.

So you did it. You looked at races, got excited and even walked through the checkout process. Now what do you do?! The excitement is there, especially considering the date will be approaching. But if you haven’t completed a ton of races or aren’t familiar with the particular event, venue or distance you may find the excitement and enthusiasm quickly turns into a bit of anxiety.

But fear not. The hardest part is behind you…sort of. What remains is the process of getting ready and building confidence in both your mind and body. So what do you do?

The First Step

The first step is – Signing Up – is always the hardest…but luckily you’ve completed it. So moving on, you need to make an honest assessment of what you would like to get out of the race. Question yourself and think about the “why’s” surrounding the race and what outcome you would like. For example, is the race for fun or experience, is it a goal you’ve been looking to accomplish (eg. completing your first half-marathon), do you want to win a podium spot, or perhaps just want something to experience or practice. There is no bad option, but you should at least have a good idea how you would like to end up prior to starting any preparation.

Prepare to Prepare

If you have a good idea of what you would like to walk away with from an event, you can get a better idea of how to prepare to achieve that. That being the case, before you really get rolling, a good solid assessment of where you stand relative to that goal is a good practice. Specifically, you need to look at where you stand physically and mentally, and then move forward making plans or setting aside time to working on improving things that you may find lacking. This is really an important (and overlooked many times) part of the process to making the race experience a positive one. You may end up performing great or terrible, but if you don’t have an idea of how you reside before hitting a start line, you may come up short in terms of what you are expecting at the finish.

It Is All Fun

What comes next is where the fun part is – the work. Of course it may be challenging or overwhelming, considering you have a good idea of what you are expecting from yourself and how you stand relative to that view. However, training for race day really can be an exciting and satisfying process of growth. You will find out different levels of “where you stand” during the days and weeks leading up to your event. The more effort and work you put in to preparing, the more you will gain when you cross that finish line.

Just remember…you signed up. You are already committed. Now you have to simply walk it out and DO the work. All the good stuff is what remains and what will follow!

A Little Help Is Sometimes A Good Thing

There are so many pieces to any successful training program. You’ve done some planning and introspection and it’s time to make it pay off. Although not always the right option, sometimes you can take some of the stress out of building and executing your program by working with a coach that has experience. Alternatively, you can find resources online or from social media groups that can offer support or advice on how to set up, execute and stick with your program. Of course, you will need to do the work – but customizing it, adjusting it and putting it all together shouldn’t be the challenge.

Don’t forget – you aren’t going to race alone… so your don’t have to go at it solo. Explore a bit to find some resources, it will help a lot come race day!

Hint: Want to get some prep in? Check out what is available for eBooks and online coaching programs. You may find something that can stick with you and get to the finish line!

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