Beyond the Finish Line: Why Races Are About the Journey, Not the Destination

We all love a good personal best (PB). That feeling of pushing your limits and seeing a new number on the clock is undeniably satisfying. But what if I told you that the true magic of races lies elsewhere, in the experience itself?

The Race as a Celebration:

Coming down the finish chute of the 50k event at Surf Coast Century was a whirlwind of emotions. My body ached. But I was fueled by months (or even years) of dedication. My mind pushed me on, one step at a time.

Tears welled up – a potent mix of exhaustion and the overwhelming joy of accomplishment.

Yet, races are more than just the outcome; they’re a celebration of your entire journey, the culmination of sweat, early mornings, and the unwavering passion you share with hundreds, maybe thousands, of others on the course. The electric energy, the inspiring camaraderie – it’s an atmosphere unlike anything a solo training run can offer.

Embrace the Unexpected:

There has not been a race that has run (pun intended) perfectly.

New to Trail Running

Weather can throw a curveball. Your stomach decides to act up, or maybe you just have an “off” day. But these unexpected challenges are what makes races so memorable. They test your resilience, your ability to adapt, and your mental grit. Overcoming these hurdles becomes a story you’ll tell for years to come, a testament to your inner strength.

The Finish Line is Just the Beginning:

Let’s be honest, the PB chase can be a relentless pursuit. It can steal the joy from the simple act of running (or swimming, cycling, etc.).

By focusing on the experience, you free yourself from the pressure of the clock. You can savour the sights, sounds, and energy of the race. You can high-five fellow runners, cheer on others, and soak it all in. After all, the memories you create and the connections you forge will last far longer than any number on a screen.

Gold Rush Trail Run

So next time you toe the starting line, remember:

  • Celebrate your journey: You’ve put in the work, now enjoy the reward.
  • Embrace the unexpected: Challenges are growth opportunities.
  • Focus on the experience: Let the joy of running take centre stage.

Races are a chance to push yourself, test your limits, and connect with a community. They’re a celebration of your dedication and a testament to the power of human potential. So lace up your shoes, step onto the starting line, and get ready to experience the magic that goes far beyond the finish line.

This is your journey, not a race against the clock. Make it an adventure!

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