As much as I love running alongside 10,000 of my closest running friends, there’s something amazing that happens when you run a solo half marathon.
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Virtual races have become the new norm lately. The crowds of cheering people, the surge of motivation you get as you pass a runner along the course, and an aid station every couple of miles sadly, are not a part of virtual races. Some may, therefore, be petrified to attempt to run a half marathon by themselves. Here are 3 tips for surviving a solo half marathon.
Tip One for a Solo Half Marathon
Choose your course wisely. Run on the road, run on the trails, or run on the treadmill. This is your choice. My personal preference is to run with ocean views.
Choosing a course is important for safety and enjoyment. When I choose a course for a run, I think, “If something were to happen to me, how close am I to someone who can help?” All it took was one nightmare experience for me to make safety a priority.
As for enjoyment, some despise running on the treadmill whereas others love it. Again, this is all about personal preference. One year, while training for a marathon, I ran 22 miles on the treadmill! Other times, I can barely make it 3 miles on the treadmill.
Bottom line is choose your virtual half marathon course wisely.
Prepare your playlist in advance. You can listen to music, podcasts, audiobooks, even listen to your favorite TV show.
As for music, there’s various ways you can stream music from Apple Music, Pandora, YouTube, etc. You can also choose to purchase specific workout mixes specific to your desired cadence. Some of my favorites are the Top Hits Workout Mixes.
When I’m not listening to music, you can find me listening to my favorite podcasts or audiobooks. There are so many amazing free podcasts. Some of my recent favorites are the Bibrave Podcast, the Do It Scared podcast, and the Brendon Burchard podcast.
Finally, I’ve even been known to listen to my favorite TV show. No, I’m not just talking about watching TV while on the treadmill. I’ve streamed my favorite TV show to listen to during an especially long run on the road.
Strategically plan aid stations and fuel. When running a half marathon, you’re going to need both fuel and water. There are options to carry fuel and water on you as you run such as a hydration pack or handheld bottle.
Another option for do-it-your-own aid stations are to plan your course to circle back around to your house or swing by a fast food place. Throughout my years of long distance running, I’ve refueled my handheld water bottle at gas stations, convenience stores, parks, and fast food places.
During my most recent San Francisco Giant Race virtual half marathon, I followed all three of these tips to successfully get to that finish line. I ran with ocean views, listened to an audiobook by Brendon Burchard, and refueled at Starbucks mid-race.
What tips do you have to successfully run a virtual half marathon? Tell me in the comments below.