At the Madison Mini-Marathon, I blasted across this finish line with a major PR (personal record)! I finished this 13.1 race in 2:24.01, for a distance where my previuos best was 2:34 earlier this year.
I’m not 100% sure, but there were some key things that I think went into this. I had downplayed this event as a race I might try for a particularly good time at. I’ve had some issues with nervousness at previous races, and for me, that has an effect on me needing a bathroom break (or 2).
For yesterday’s race, in hilly Madison, WI, I had made my goal not to be a time but rather to run the 1st half of the course without a bathroom break. I met that goal, making it to 6 and then 7 miles without needing a port-a-potty stop. And I still felt good. So I kept on going.
Another factor that I think helped was because I was not as nervous for this race, I didn’t overeat too much the day before. Sometimes in the name of “carb-loading” I enjoy extra snacks or a larger dinner, whereas Friday night we had some Fazoli’s (Italian fast food) for dinner. It was fine, but not anything that made me want to scarf down the whole dinner — for the better. I did enjoy their breadsticks though — I had 3!
Madison’s course has more rolling hills than anything in Chicago, and I thought that would affect my time negatively. I haven’t been running hills much now that I’m in Chicago. But I had run a lot of this course before, from when I was living in Madison for almost 3 years. So each part of the race route I kept thinking back to either a training run or a race that had been on that same exact path. So maybe some nostalgia and “I’m doing this better now!” had a positive impact on my race.
Immediately post-race (well, after leaving the finishing chute), M & I went to go chill on the University of Wisconsin Student Union and enjoy the outdoors, music and a free glass o’ beer! I always enjoyed doing this when we lived in Madison, and it was a nice decompression post race, enjoying the UW Union’s iconic orange, yellow & green chairs.
Now, 24 hours post-race, I’m recovering with rest, more water, and some chilling out. I’m incredibly proud of my accomplishment, and am beginning to consider how to plot my way to a new goal. Any suggestions?
What have you found are your personal success tips for a PR?