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What To Do When Your Race is Cancelled

Updated: Jan 5, 2023

I'm going to say the thing that no runner wants to talk about...but it's starting to happen and

I'd rather have this information than not. So, with Tokyo deferring their 2021 Marathon, New Jersey cancelling the marathon, and a smattering of other small races getting cancelled or deferred, I want to share some tips and information about what to do if your races gets cancelled or postponed (and we'll all cross our fingers it doesn't happen again!).

  • Grieve. If you were in the bulk of training, it is OK to be mad, angry, devastated, all the things. Give yourself time to be upset.

  • To virtual or not to virtual. There is a lot that goes into deciding this, but a big part is how you feel about it. Are you still committed to your goal, even without a traditional in-person race? Did you already do 80% of your training? If so, a virtual race *still counts*. Treat it like a real race, get family and friends to come cheer you on. & celebrate every second of it like you would an in-person race.

  • Deal with the logistics. Do you need to cancel flights, hotels, etc? This part sucks, but is a real part of dealing with cancelled or postponed races.

  • Embrace your running friends. No one else gets the heartbreak of a cancelled race like a running best friend, so use them to sympathize.

  • It's ok to stop training the day you find out the race is not happening. It's also ok to keep training. Do whatever feels best. Things are hard and no one is judging you either way.

Have you had an in-person fall race cancelled? Still hoping to race one?

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