5 Ways to Have Fun Racing

Do you get serious pre-race anxiety, so much that you almost don’t even enjoy racing anymore?  It may be time to shake things up and try to make racing fun again.  Here are some things to try so you can relax and enjoy racing more.

Try a theme race.

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Theme races are all the rage right now, from color runs to down-and-dirty obstacle course races to middle-of-the-night electric runs.  Try one of these fun theme races and you’ll find yourself focusing on the fun, not your race performance.

Race in costume.

Runner Dressed as Elvis
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It’s hard to take racing seriously when you’re dressed as a super hero or you're wearing a tutu. If you’d like to venture in costume racing in a race with lots of other costumed runners, try one that on Halloween (or close to it), a theme race like a Diva run or Santa race, or any race at Disney World, Disneyland, or other theme parks. 

Just make sure you don’t forget the Body Glide because costumes can chafe you in places you never thought possible.

Also see:   Photo Gallery of Runners in Costume

Do a relay race.

relay race runners
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Relay races, such as the Ragnar Relay Series, are popping up all over the U.S. The idea is that a team of runners break up a long-distance race with each of them running one or more legs of it. Many runners like these type of races because they get to experience the thrill of racing and not worry as much about their individual performance as they do in solo racing.

If you can't convince a group of friends to do a relay race, check out the race's website -- there are usually teams with spots open on their roster. Some half or full marathons also offer a relay option. You could also look for a triathlon with a relay option and have two friends do the swim and bike legs, while you handle the run portion.

Smile for the camera.

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Typically when I see photographers on the race course, I try to put on my best serious runner face.  Inevitably, it backfires and I end up looking angry, in pain, or constipated – not like a fierce runner.   What works a lot better is to just smile.  Even if you don't feel like smiling, fake it until you make it! Your race photos will look a lot better and the act of smiling will help you feel much more relaxed.

Also see:  How to Look Good in Your Race Photos

Run a race at night.


It used to be that you had to wake up at crack of dawn, eat breakfast, and get yourself to the race start. But with more night races popping up around the country, runners can have a leisurely day before running their race. And once they finish, they can celebrate and go to sleep, rather than being exhausted all day long. Before you try it, make sure you read up on these tips for night racing.

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