Motivation for Racing – Why Am I Doing This?

When your alarm goes off at 6:00 (or earlier!), and you’re tired, and it’s a little cold out, and you’d rather be in bed, sometimes you ask yourself – Why Am I Doing This? Now, for me this happens all the time when I’m training. I’m not a morning person, I prefer to get my workouts in after work or on my days off (except swimming, I like swimming before work).

But the morning of the 2012 WPS Half Marathon, I had that same feeling. I think there were several reasons why:

  • We had promised to take the kids to The Avengers the night before, but the show we wanted to go to was sold out, so we wound up at a much later show. We didn’t get home until after midnight.
  • I had been sick for the past week, and was still feeling slightly off.
  • I knew it was too soon to even attempt to break 2 hours – I haven’t trained enough, and I definitely haven’t run outside enough.
  • This race was not my goal race of the season – it was barely even a warm-up race. I had no real “goal” going into the race.

Sometimes that happens. Pinning the bib on your shirt just isn’t enough motivation. Even the medal at the end might not be a big enough carrot. But you know what? Do it anyway. You paid your race fees – go run your race. I know last year at the QCM Half, I was just so excited to be able to run that I made the day fun. Maybe you’ll meet some new people on the course (I’m not terribly social, so I struggle with this, but I did meet up with someone I “knew” from Daily Mile – that was fun!).

I found that the sheer energy from running with so many other people made me feel better. I challenged myself to have a good run, even though this was the longest run I’d done outside since Disney – meaning I was really out of practice. I enjoyed the light mist of rain, and the funky course – under bridges, across paths, and through neighbourhoods I rarely venture into.

Along the way, I found my motivation – I run because I love it. And races are a fun way to connect with other members of the running community. You often get to run on streets or trails you wouldn’t normally run on, and do some people watching (I saw some cool running clothes out there!). So there it is – I race because even when I don’t think it will be… it’s fun. Next time I wonder why, I need to remember this. 🙂

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2 Responses to Motivation for Racing – Why Am I Doing This?

  1. PlumPetals says:

    I think I’m going to have to come back and read this post when I get ready for my first race in November. 🙂

    • Kris says:

      Yep – it really is fun, and so energizing. So even when you don’t have the desire, it’s worth doing.

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