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Common Racing Mistakes #3-4:

Common Racing Mistakes #3-4:

#3: Starting in the Wrong Position

The basic rule of lining up for any road race is: Faster people in front, slower people in back. But some runners position themselves too far up, so they start at a pace that’s too fast for them (see Racing Mistake #1). Or, some runners start too far back, so they end up having to weave through a crowd of slower runners and walkers. The racing solution: If you think you’re going to run faster than a majority of the field, get closer to the front. If you’re a slower runner, go toward the back. Many races have posted pace signs for minutes-per-mile. Try to start near your estimated pace. If there aren’t any pace signs, ask the people around you what pace they’ll be running, so you’ll know if you’re in the right spot.

#4: Not Warming Up for a Short Race

When you’re running a short race that requires a high intensity, like a 5K, your body really needs to warm up if you want to run well. This is especially true if you’re racing in colder weather. A good warm-up dilates your blood vessels, ensuring that your muscles are well supplied with oxygen. It also raises your muscles’ temperature for optimal flexibility and efficiency. By slowly raising your heart rate, the warm-up also helps minimize stress on your heart when you start your run.The racing solution: Make sure you do a proper warm-up before any race under five miles. Try jogging slowly for about 10 minutes before you head to the race start. For longer races, your first mile or two essentially serves as your warm-up.

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