Why we race

I was talking with my friend about racing earlier and she asked whether I thought she should run a race in a month after running the 55k version of Antelope Canyon Ultras yesterday.

I can’t answer that question. But since she asked my advice and seemed unsure, I asked her to think about 2 things:

  1. Will your body feel recovered and ready, training-wise?
  2. Are you excited to run this race?

We talked a little more about it and she expressed concerns about potentially feeling burned out on races. I keep seeing this in the ultra community, that people will sign up for a bunch of races and end up just not enjoying the full experience because it feels like pressure.

I think what most people don’t ask themselves is this: if you take away the racing, will you still enjoy the running? It’s important to reflect on this! If it feels like a chore, if it feels like you’re forcing yourself to run because you forced yourself to sign up for a race, is that a sustainable mentality? Is that allowing you to achieve optimal experience or simply enjoy life? Why are you doing this thing you’re doing?

It’s probably something we can filter a lot of things through. I’d say this consistent awareness of intention has been something that’s really helped me reach a good place in running and life, too.

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