Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Let's Talk About Race Etiquette

Waking up this morning for early morning pump class wasn't too hard. But it hit me now. I'm exhausted!

I feel like I worked really hard in class today. We started out with some lunges and dead lifts. About half way through them, my right hamstring tightened up and I got a charley horse. Luckily it didn't stick around for the whole class, it went away after a little bit of stretching. But as soon as I got home, I foam rolled it out really well.

When M got up, the first thing she did was find my shoes and put them on.

In store for this weeks workouts are some treadmill runs and one or two outside runs. Let's hope that the clubhouse is working. It's ridiculous the amount of times I've contacted them. If it's not there will definitely have to be some adjusting. That's one thing that's really great about running is that you can be pretty flexible with your plans.

Today I want to talk a little bit about racing courtesy.  For the bigger, longer distance races, most people are know the do's and don'ts of racing etiquette. And, lets be honest, I'm not perfect at this, by far. But I try to make sure I'm being courteous to other runners on the course. Heres how:

- If you're not going for a time (if you're running the race for fun. You just signed up on a whim. You don't care what place or time you get), start in the back of the pack. Let those people who are racing, not only for fun but for a time/place, start at the front of the group.  They will usually tell you this at a 5k before the gun goes off. Listen.

- Strollers also start at the back. You've got a much bigger load than a solo runner, that also means you get in the way easier. That being said, don't run people over. Don't try to weave in and out of the crowd just go around instead. And don't expect every runner to move for you. Notice who's around you and don't hog the road, please.

- Going with the above, those with out strollers, if you notice a stroller runner and they are trying to pass you, it's better to let them pass than cut them off and get run over. Move out of the way.

-  If you're going to stop and walk, that's just fine. Just don't stop in walk in the middle of the course. Move to the side until you're ready to pick the pace back up. And if you're in a group and all of you need to stop and walk, don't group up in a line blocking the course. Just move over and try to be as far out of the way as possible.

- There will be food at the end of the race. There is enough for everyone at the race to have a LITTLE of everything. I emphasize little for a reason. Guys, you don't need 4 beagles, a bunch of bananas, an orange and 3 cookies.  You ran the same distance as everyone else, make sure you don't take more than your share of refuel food. Especially for the longer runs. Because, let's be honest, running a 5k doesn't make you have to refuel right after. It's a nice thing to have, but not necessary. Bigger races obviously need more food. But, regardless of the length you ran, don't eat more than your share of food. This is a problem, you can see one runners experience here. I'd be pissed.

- Make sure you know the course well. And, if it's an out-and-back course, or if there is a part of the course that goes back through another part of the course, make sure you leave room for all of the runners on their way back through. This has happened to me, as I'm sure it's happened to several others. You're on your way back on your race. You're on the tale end, you're ready to pick the pace up a little. And then you get blocked by a group of walkers or a group of racers that are racing for fun. While I'm super glad you're having a good time with a huge group of friends and doing something good and healthy for you, it is so frustrating to have to slow down to get through your pack.  Like I said earlier, move over to the side and let other runners through. HERE is a great article about how running a race is kind of like driving a car. It should be as simple as that.

Now I'm done with my little rant. I hope it wasn't too offensive or rude to others. Let's all just use common sense and courtesy when you're at a race. Everyone has worked hard to be where they are. Let's be happy and kind to each other.
There's a girl that I've run a couple of races with, she's a beast and wins all of them.  She always takes the time and energy to go back after she finishes and she cheers every one on while she's jogging back.  What a great example of a courteous, kind racer. I don't normally finish close enough to the front and have energy to go back, but I do try to cheer others on as they come through the finish line.

Remember that running is about having fun and growing.  No matter the race's cause, everyone is there for a reason. Respect that as you run.

Have you ever had a bad race experience because of someone else?

What's one thing you try to do every race to be courteous?

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