It’s race week for the Real Life Runner household and with that comes this week’s episode on pre-race anxiety. The episode gives us a chance to discuss the concept, talk about our own emotions heading into the upcoming race, and cover some methods of calming the nerves.
We start with a major point that everyone is going to have some feelings connected to an upcoming race. It is simply natural to have an emotional reaction when a big event is coming. What is under your control is not the feeling, but the name you give the feeling and the response to it. Instead of nervous, rename the feeling excitement. This works the same way that fatigue in a race can be interpreted and a sign you are running fast enough.
Next we discuss the causes for extra anxiety during the week before a race. The list is lengthy as to why a race could be given greater importance, but it comes down to expectations. Racing is an unknown and when expectations are high, the unknown is usually larger. This could be from a cheering crowd, a higher level of competition, a goal time you have told others, or simply a long time since your last race. By controlling your expectations, the anxiety can be controlled a little as well.
The episode then dives into personal feelings about the upcoming race and becomes a podcast therapy session. Kevin covers how most of the list of reasons to have extra anxiety apply to him but he is doing his best to simply be excited. Angie talks about how she tends to run best when she does not put any big goals on her races. She has a desire to run her personal best, but fully accepts that she is in better shape than the race she ran about a year ago. Ultimately, she wants to show what she is capable of and hopes this race gives her the chance.
In the final portion of the show, we cover four major points about what to do to deal with pre-race anxiety.
So that’s it. Be excited, have a plan, and see the race as an experiment on the lifelong running journey you are taking. And don’t forget to fuel.
Hope you enjoy it!! Let us know if you have any questions that you would like answered on our show!
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