Runners cross many finish lines, which means there are lots of victories to celebrate.
Of course, we all aspire to be really fast, but runners know that we are all winners when it comes to achieving things in the sport. And this doesn’t necessarily mean in the world of racing.
Sure we all want that age group award and might even aspire to actually win first place in a race.
But sometimes it’s these non-race victories that make running that much more fulfilling. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what place we finish a race, what matters is that we had the strength to finish at all.
Here are the 5 victories in running that aren’t first place.
1. Running That Long Distance For The First Time
Looking at a long-distance training plan and seeing double-digit mileage is scary. We often think there is no way we can run that many miles at once.
But as the weeks progress and we slowly build up to it, we learn that we absolutely can do it.
And running that long distance for the first might be so bittersweet. It might be hard work to run long distance, but finishing that first real long run is a victory like no other.
It sets the pace for the rest of our running journey, moving forward with the proof that no distance is out of reach.
2. Finishing Your First Half or Full Marathon
Which is why finish your first long distance race is everything. No, we aren’t finishing first place in a half or full marathon. But we don’t have to. Because crossing these finish lines is one of the best accomplishments any runner can put under their belts.
It means that we stayed dedicated to preparing for the event, and the training is really where we learn what we are made of. It’s race day where we get to celebrate all of the hard efforts leading up to and during that day.
Nothing tastes as sweet as the victory of finishing your first half or full marathon knowing all the blood, sweat and tears, the sacrifices, and the mental grit it took to complete this major goal.
3. Setting A New PR
It might seem small in comparison, but setting a personal record is a major victory. And this doesn’t have to be at a race.
Setting a new PR during an everyday run is a major accomplishment. It shows that we can now run faster with ease since the added excitement or pressure of the race atmosphere isn’t there.
It is a sign of our progress, speed, and strength.
4. Consistently Hitting Negative Splits
The also rings true for a run with negative splits. This is when every mile is faster than the one before it. This means the runner has the endurance to continue to push the pace, without getting tired towards the end.
It means we can have self-control and not run too fast out of the gate. Discipline is important to not burn out.
Negative splits are a great way to show growth as a runner.
5. Making A Running Bestie
This might not seem as big of a victory as some of the other ones on this list, but hear me out: a running friend is everything.
It is that person to hold us accountable to get up and get those miles in when it’s cold and dark out. It’s that ear to listen to our stories and the mouth to tell us theirs to make miles that less boring. It’s the shoulder to rely on when the miles get hard. It’s our pacer, our security, and therapist.
A running bestie is a must-have and it’s a major victory once we go from solo runner to having running friends.