How to avoid getting stuck behind in a marathon race?

During previous marathon races, there was a recurring issue of not being able to run freely for the first kilometer, only maintaining a pace of around 6 minutes per kilometer due to congestion at the back This time, it is unknown which section I will be assigned to and I am seeking solutions to overcome this problem

Sorting Sections Based on Grades

As long as your grades are good enough, you will be placed in a higher section. This is a rule that speaks for itself based on merit.

Self-improvement and Adjusting Mindset: Coping Strategies for Event Divisions

Apart from some events that use full marathon/half marathon grouping, most events divide participants into groups based on their registration results. Generally speaking, the better the result, the higher the division, and the divisions with slightly lower or no results (first-time participants) are placed further back. This division makes sense because better results mean faster speed, which allows participants to pass the starting line more quickly and causes less interference to the participants behind.

However, this division can also cause a problem: many first-time marathon/half marathon runners, although lacking results, have strong capabilities and are therefore placed in the back division. Many runners who have undergone arduous training and significantly improved their ability might also be placed in the back division due to average performances on paper.

Unlike professional athletes who can be directly invited if they have strong capabilities and enjoy the privileges of invited participants for starting position, amateur runners in their first race need to level up by themselves. They can progress from the back division to the front division through the experience of multiple races.

So, what can be done to help oneself level up faster?

  1. Enhance abilities: As mentioned earlier, divisions are determined by results, and registration results are the core factor in deciding which division to be placed. Being in a back division indicates the need for further training. In fact, the impact of being in a back division on the level of ability does not exceed 10 minutes. If you have the strength, you can obtain the right to start in the front division after just one race. Therefore, improving ability is crucial. I have provided a lot of popular science information about various methods of marathon training and the problems runners encounter during running training before, if you are interested, you can flip through the home page. I won’t go into details here.

  2. Pay attention to details: If you are already placed in the back division, what you can do is accept it and try to minimize the disturbance caused by being in the back division during the race by using some methods. The advice I can give is to arrive early, finish the warm-up early, and enter your division as soon as possible. Then, try to “squeeze” towards the front of that area. Of course, during this process, you should avoid disturbing others as much as possible.

After the race starts, the advice I can give is that since you are already in the back division, you should quickly pass through the crowded crowd. Whether it is running on both sides or squeezing through the crowd, pay attention to avoid colliding physically or verbally with others. Everyone is here to participate in the race, so don’t think you are special just because you have strong abilities.

One more thing to note here is that because of your relatively strong abilities, you will definitely be faster than those around you, but too many people can still affect your speed. Therefore, instead of trying to achieve your predetermined target pace before the race, it’s better to slightly lower it and steadily pass through the crowd. Firstly, this slower pace allows you to move through the crowd, and at the same time, you won’t be affected by constantly changing speeds, and secondly, it serves as a warm-up.

After running a few kilometers and the crowd becomes smaller and your body warms up, at that time, you will feel both physically and mentally comfortable, and it will be easier to achieve a good performance. Instead of causing rhythm disorder and affecting performance by maneuvering through the crowd in the beginning.

  1. Adjust mindset: After discussing techniques, the last thing to mention is mindset. Many people complain about the division, but it’s actually unnecessary. The rules of the division are fixed. However, your mindset towards the division can greatly affect your race performance. You can regard it as part of the race and an essential experience on the road of running, or you can feel that the crowded crowd around you is an obstacle to your performance, which will greatly impact your race mentality.

With a good mindset, you will be more relaxed during the race. However, with a negative mindset, it’s easy to have an emotional breakdown when things don’t go as planned, which in turn affects your race state and performance. So, this point is quite important.

That’s about it~ Besides, there doesn’t seem to be any better solutions. Just focus on leveling up by slaying monsters~

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Unsatisfactory Performance

Unless your performance meets the elite standards or you are an invited participant, it is impossible not to be held back.