Fabulous advice from so many people! All I will add is that as someone who's only been running seriously for about 14 months, the adrenaline and the sense of achievement from finishing your first race FAR outweighs any negative self-talk about the time it took. I'll also offer a great mantra: I ran a half-marathon last Sunday - my fourth ever. My usual pace is one that I'm proud of (just over 10 min/miles) considering my recent start, but I know it's a lot slower than most of the field. As I started this race and I was getting constantly passed by people of all ages, shapes, and sizes, I just kept saying to myself, "Run your own race. Run your own race." And I did. As it happened, I smashed my PR by 10 minutes - and I'm sure it's because I didn't try to surge ahead to "keep up" early on. I'm proud of my time; I'm prouder still of running my own race.
You know, I have never looked up any times for other races other than the ones that I've participated in. So, I didn't really have any reference to compare myself to.
I'm pretty new to this racing scene. I guess the few races that I have done so far were with some pretty seasoned runners.
It's good to know that I'm doing well. Thanks for the morale boost!
Just Keep Going......................
Grosse Pointe Rotary Run 10 K 1:10 9/18/10
Birmingham Lions Club 10 K 1:08 9/26/10
D Town River Run 10 K 1:11 10/10/10
Sailorunner, I have to ditto Marykb -- that is definitely a respectable pace! I can't imagine finishing last in your group with that time! I've run much slower than that and finished in the middle of the pack. Keep up the great work!
You have gotten some wonderful input already, but I just wanted to add my encouragement...like Nike says (or used to), "Just do it!" People in the running community are really supportive, and I think even the fastest runner knows that you have to start somewhere! I did a 4.4 mile race on Memorial Day, and I remember that as I was nearing the 3 mile mark, there were runners who had already finished and were passing me in the other direction. (Granted, I am slow, and line up toward the back, but those were some fast runners!) I remember them smiling at me and saying encouraging things like, "Looking good, keep it up!" and "Hang in there, you're doing great!" And some of the speedier runners hung around the finish line to cheer on the slower runners (and walkers)...it really is an awesome feeling to cross the finish line!
As others have suggested, run your own race. You are your own competition. Set a reasonable goal, and try to accomplish it. Bear in mind that if you're used to being on the treadmill, your outside pace might be different. Personally, my outside pace is slower, since I have trouble trying to regulate it.
I also recommend lining up in the middle of the pack (or slightly behind the middle). That way, you will probably be with some people who are at your pace, which can be helpful. If you do need to walk or take a break, just move over to the right hand side of the road (which I believe is considered runner's etiquette).
Most of all, HAVE FUN! And remember that your slowest time in a race is faster than your best time sitting on the couch!
'...remember that your slowest time in a race is faster than your best time sitting on the couch!'
I LOVE that!
PB 5k (training): 25:32, PB 10K (training): 56:05, PB 20k: 1:55:13, PB half marathon: 2:01:32
4/2/2011 Prague International Half Marathon 2:03:37
6/04/2011 Silva Nortica Trail Half Marathon 2:14:54
6/18/2011 Olomouc Half Marathon
8/14/2011 Zebrak 25K
Not faster, but farther. Not catch up, but hunt down.
You just gotta go for it!!! Good Luck & Happy Running!