I’ve always said that running is 99% mental and 1% physical, and yesterday I learned that training is as much about training your mind as it is about training your body.
You see, the reason you train is only partly to increase your fitness. The main reason runners train is to familiarise themselves with everything that could possibly occur during a run, and then figure out how to deal with it. So while you will be physically able to complete your run on race day, you will also be capable of managing anything the race might throw at you.
Yesterday I learned a valuable lesson that I am happy to pass on to you here: When training, run on bike paths, not along streets.
I went for a 25km long run and decided to go along streets, because that made it easy to plan my route out beforehand, since online maps generally show you streets, but not bike paths. The problem was, streets have stop lights. I had a great first half of my run, until I hit stop lights, and had to stop every 10 minutes!
My run took me 25 minutes longer than it should have, largely because I spent some 15 minutes waiting at lights.
Don’t run along streets.