The Bad Race

So you just ran a bad race.  You’re really angry at yourself because you know there are no excuses for your performance even if you don’t show it.

We all have bad races.  They’re inevitable and pretty much have happened to everyone in the history of running.  You sometimes never know when they will happen, but when they do, you can’t be discouraged or demoralized by them.  If anything, those are the moments that should fuel your motivation to become a better runner.

You have to remember that it was just one bad race, and it’s happened to everyone.  More importantly, you can’t let the memory of the bad race stick with you.  If you remember someone, who you never thought would pass you, pass you during a race, you can’t refer back to the memory of the bad race where the person passed you for the first time.  You have to understand that everyone gets better at their own pace.  Some faster and some slower.  Maybe that person is faster, but you have to run your own race, and not think about it.  You can’t just suddenly feel demoralized and feel hopeless because you got passed.

All this is easier said than done and I still have some trouble keeping that mindset after a bad race or a race I feel like I didn’t do well in.  I always try to tell people (especially my teammates) that bad races are okay.  They happen to everyone and they aren’t permanent.


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