Running Quotes About Racing

Get Motivated With These Running Quotations

running quote

Many runners run races to test their performance, mix things up, and stay motivated to keep running. Here are some motivational running quotes about running races.

  • "It doesn't matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, 'I have finished.' There is a lot of satisfaction in that."
    -Fred Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder
  • "The miracle isn't that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start."
    -John Bingham, running speaker and writer
  • "My thoughts before a big race are usually pretty simple. I tell myself: 'Get out of the blocks, run your race, stay relaxed. If you run your race, you'll win... channel your energy. Focus.'"
    -Carl Lewis
  • "Fear is gradually replaced by excitement and a simple desire to see what you can do on the day."  -Lauren Fleshman

  • "When you put yourself on the line in a race and expose yourself to the unknown, you learn things about yourself that are very exciting."
    - Doris Brown Heritage, pioneer in women's distance running
  • "Good health, peace of mind, being outdoors, camaraderie - those are all wonderful things that come to you when running. But for me, the real pull of running - the proverbial icing on the cake - has always been racing."     -Bill Rodgers
  • Big occasions and races which have been eagerly anticipated almost to the point of dread, are where great deeds can be accomplished.
    – Jack Lovelock
  • "I also realize that winning doesn't always mean getting first place; it means getting the best out of yourself."
    -Meb Keflezighi, silver medalist, 2004 Olympic Marathon
  • "Why race? The need to be tested, perhaps; the need to take risks; and the chance to be number one."
    -Dr. George Sheehan
  • "Everyone in life is looking for a certain rush. Racing is where I get mine."
    - John Trautmann
  • "I'm always nervous. If I wasn't nervous, it would be weird. I get the same feeling at all the big races. It's part of the routine, and I accept it. It means I'm there and I'm ready."
    - Allyson Felix, Gold and Silver Olympic medalist
  • "My whole feeling in terms of racing is that you have to be very bold. You sometimes have to be aggressive and gamble."
    - Bill Rodgers
  • "Racing is the fun part; it's the reward of all the hard work."
    -Kara Goucher
  • "Once you're beat mentally, you might as well not even go to the starting line."
    -Todd Williams
  • "I love controlling a race, chewing up an opponent. Let's get down and dirty. Let's fight it out. It's raw, animalistic, with no one to rely on but yourself. There's no better feeling than that."
    -Adam Goucher, Winner, 1999 U.S. Nationals 5K title
  • "I'm going to work so that it's a pure guts race at the end, and if it is, I am the only one who can win it."
    -Steve Prefontaine
  • "Let's just say it and be done with it. Racing hurts. But here's another truth: having put in the effort to prepare for a race and then not giving it your all hurts even more. The first kind of hurt goes away in hours or a day. The second kind of hurt can last a lifetime."
    -Larry Shapiro, Zen and the Art of Running
  • "Different people have different reasons for racing, but one is simply the incentive to get out and run, increase mileage and feel good.
    -Hal Higdon, author, and runner
  • "Be confident in the work you did to prepare for the race. Take a look back at your training logs to remind yourself that you've done everything possible to prepare. The race is the fun part where you get to see the hard work pay off. Enjoy it."
    -Desiree Linden
  • "There are victories of the soul and spirit. Sometimes, even if you lose, you win."
    -Elie Wiesel
  • "Racing is an escape from society. From symbols of status, and self-perception. A chance to just be. For everyone to just be, with each other."
    -Erin Beresini
  • "My times become slower and slower, but the experience of the race is unchanged: each race a drama, each race a challenge, each race stretching me in one way or another, and each race telling me more about myself and others."  
    -George Sheehan
  • "Running is in my blood—the adrenaline flows before the races, the love/hate of butterflies in your stomach." -Marcus O'Sullivan
     
  • "Racing teaches us to challenge ourselves. It teaches us to push beyond where we thought we could go. It helps us to find out what we are made of. This is what we do. This is what it's all about."
    -PattiSue Plumer, U.S. Olympian
     
  • "You didn't beat me. You merely finished in front of me." 
    -Hal Higdon
     
  • "Fast running isn't forced. You have to relax and let the run come out of you."
    – Desiree Linden
     
  • "No marathon gets easier later. The half way point only marks the end of the beginning."
    -Joe Henderson
     
  • "No matter how old I get, the race remains one of life's most rewarding experiences."
    -George Sheehan
     
  • "If you feel bad at 10 miles, you're in trouble. If you feel bad at 20 miles, you're normal. If you don't feel bad at 26 miles, you're abnormal."
    -Rob de Castella, on marathon racing
     
  • "Winning is about heart, not just legs. It's got to be in the right place."
    -Lance Armstrong
     
  • "The beauty of running is its simplicity; the beauty of runners is that we all have a similar drive to improve. We are either trying to run a personal best, or toeing the line for the first time, which will snowball into a future of trying to run personal bests. We road racers are a tight community of mileage-happy, limit-pushing athletes."
    -Deena Kastor

  • "A race is a work of art that people can look at and be affected in as many ways they're capable of understanding."
    -Steve Prefontaine
     
  • "Why run a race? You race to test yourself, for the ritual, the camaraderie, and for the adventure and discovery."
    -from The New York Road Runners Club Complete Book of Running
     
  • "So much in life seems inflexible and unchangeable, and part of the joy of running and especially racing is the realization that improvement and progress can be achieved."
    -Nancy Anderson
     
  • "Recycle those nerves and make them adreneline."  
    -Katy Perry
     
  • "I believe in using races as motivators. It's hard to keep an exercise program if you don't have a significant goal in sight."
    -Bob Greene
     
  • "One skill that separates good from almost-good runners is an ability to concentrate for an entire race, whether it is a mile or a marathon."
    -Kara Goucher
     
  • "What distinguishes those of us at the starting line from those of us on the couch is that we learn through running to take what the days gives us, what our body will allow us, and what our will can tolerate."
    -John Bingham, running writer and speaker
     
  • "One day I won't be able to do this, today is not that day."
    -Unknown
     
  • "Tears streamed down my face as I crossed the finish line. I was a new person, a runner."
    -Thomas King
  • "For me, races are the celebration of my training."
    --Dan Browne, 2007 National Champion in the 5K and 20K
     
  • "Every race is a question, and I never know until the last yards what the answer will be. That's the lure of racing."  -Joe Henderson
     
  • "It's amazing how the same pace in practice can feel so much harder than on race day. Stay confident. Trust the process."
    -Sara Hall
     
  • Winning has nothing to do with racing. Most days don't have races anyway. Winning is about struggle and effort and optimism, and never, ever, ever giving up.   -Amby Burfoot
     

  • “Your goal is simple: Finish. Experience your first race, don’t race it. Your first race should be slightly longer or slightly faster than your normal run. Run your first race. Later you can race. You will be a hero just for finishing, so don’t put pressure on yourself by announcing a time goal. Look at it this way: The slower you run the distance, the easier it will be to show off by improving your time the next race!”    - Bob Glover, The Runner's Handbook
     

  • "There is a moment in every race. A moment where you can either quit, fold, or say to yourself, 'I can do this.'"
    -Gatorade Ad

 

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