I’ll be running the Dischem half marathon on Sunday as my first race of the year. That said I’m not treating it as a race at all. The only good time I want from the race is a good time out on the road. This will be my long run for the week. I’ve increased the distance for the week leading up to the weekend by 2.6km from the last few weeks and look forward to an enjoyable run.
Running in races helps me with other aspects of the whole running preparation thing. Fine tuning the rituals of race day is very important to me. With about 20 000 runners expected to run the Comrades marathon this year, getting used to crowded starts, water tables, parking areas, finish areas and so on is a must. These things can really cause a lot of stress so I run some races to “train” for this. With a race like Comrades it’s nice to be able to relax about all these things and use all your energy for the race itself.
So Dischem this weekend will be for “rituals training” as well as getting my long run for the week done. It’s also important to get the body used to the Coke and other goodies you can get to eat and drink on the road. If you want to try a new energy gel or some energy bar or whatever, races like these are the perfect place to do so.
Then there’s the “get out of bed and get ready to drive to the race” routine that needs training as well. Having all these aspects fine tuned makes the race a lot more relaxed and enjoyable. So that’s my focus for Sunday’s race. I’m sure I’ll have a lot of fun!