Show Up

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

When I first started running, I signed up for a race to inspire me to run every day. Every race that I’ve ever run has been to inspire me to keep exercising every day so that I would keep myself healthy. The race was a by-product of the daily habit. I didn’t care how quickly I finished. Just showing up to the race was good enough for me.

Anne over at Complete Running Network suggests that going to a race with the idea of just finishing it is selling yourself short.

Anne believes that it’s not good enough to just show up:

“Runners shouldn’t show up at the starting line of a race planning to just finish. There’s far more challenge to reaching a realistic target time.”

I don’t agree with Anne. We all run races for different reasons. I run races for inspiration and weight loss. Other people run races to raise money for charitable events. Still others run races to create bonding family experiences for their children. There are as many reasons to run races as there are people who run races. Focusing on finish time is merely one way to keep score.

She did have some good advice toward the end of the article:

“Extreme weather on race day may mean quickly adjusting expectations. Or, you may get hurt or sick on the course and instantly modify plans. But don’t sell yourself short. Finish up by the time you said you would. And declare what that time will be on your blog (if you have one) and to your friends. Even if you finish dead last, if you hit your most conservative goal, you’ll have won.”

If I have trained enough to show up for a race and finish it, then I have won. I don’t need a finishing time to prove it. Just showing up at the race is more than most people ever dare to do. Focusing on the finishing time isn’t “selling myself short” it’s just short-sighted.

Remember: “Eighty percent of success is showing up.” Woody Allen


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