There are so many different takes on racing in the club. Some love it, some hate. A lot of my friends do it for “the bling”. I personally love racing. There’s no better felling to me than crossing the finish line.
Sue always said “Andrew, you are so competitive, that’s why you like racing so much”. And at first I would deny deny deny. I thought I am not competitive. I don’t care if someone beats me, I am one of the slowest males in the races most times, if I was competitive I wouldn’t race because there’s no way I can compete with most males, especially in my age category. But one day I realized, I am competitive, but not with anyone else, but with myself. I want to be the best me I can be so I compete with myself to get there. If that means I throw in some friendly competition with Brenda, Derek, or Erin, so be it. If they beat me, they beat me, but at least it pushes both parties to reach their full potential.
To me races are a measurement for improvement. People can tell you, you’ve gotten faster or stronger, but you don’t know for sure until you race and find out for sure.
I love everything about the race process: going to get my bib, putting the bib on my shirt 5000 times until it’s centred and straight(ish), putting my clothes out the night before, making the strategy, the dive to the race, the prerace atmosphere, and then of course the race.
When that gun goes off I turn into a different person. People are now targets (ok ok maybe I’m more competitive than I thought) and the only things that matter are me and that watch. When the race starts I hit paces that I can never hit during a regular run, maybe it’s the atmosphere, maybe it’s the competitor in me, or maybe it’s the face it’s being recorded. I have no idea. I do know that it feels awesome to go out there and run like I can’t normally run. When I cross that finish line, I feel such a great sense of accomplishment, whether I hit my goal or not, knowing that I did my best and I gave it my all. Race season will begin in just over a month, and I’m super excited to get back at it! See you all at the start line!