In case you missed it, Salty Running is holding an exciting little contest this month. Participating is easy! All you have to do is send us your awesome-est most triumphant/ disappointing/ hilarious/ embarrassing race report ever and you could win A FREE PAIR OF SHOES and other cool Salty swag to boot! I am here to help give you a little leg up on the competition with a handy guide to writing your most amazing race report ever!
Whether you have a 2013 race you want to report about for our contest or you just want to know how to write a good one for all your 2014 pr performances, read on for some pro-tips on writing a highly captivating and entertaining race report (and don’t forget to thank me when you win that new pair of shoes!)
1. State Your Goals and Objectives
Your adoring readers want to know what inspired you to choose your race and what you hoped to get out of it. Were you on the hunt for a new PR? Maybe you just wanted to have ton of fun checking some big, exotic destination marathon off your bucket list? Was this race just a stepping to stone towards a bigger goal? Tell us about the motivation that got your there, your hopes and dreams for the day, and your strategy for achieving them.
2. How’d It Go?
Well, don’t just sit there twiddling your thumbs! Tell us how it went for goodness sake! We want the mile-by-mile break down! What were your splits? Were you successful in executing your race plan? How did you feel? What cool stuff did you see? Of course you don’t have to give us every minute detail, particularly if you ran a longish race, but we are dying to hear your best synopsis of how it all played out!
3. Spare Absolutely No Juicy Detail!
Tell us everything! (In a reasonable, tactful, and appropriate way, of course.) Was this race a meaningful and emotional experience for you? Did you find yourself LOLing your face off at a particularly hilarious spectator sign? Did a compassionate stranger rescue you from utter despair with a random act of kindness? Did you poop your pants??? We are on the edge of our seats here!!! We must know all the juicy details that made your race experience meaningful/ awful/ fantastic/ humiliating, and uniquely you! And we ESPECIALLY want to know about it if you have a great new poop story. So don’t be shy! This is the stuff that great race reports are made of!
4. A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words
It’s no big secret that race report readers (and readers in general for that matter) love pictures! We
want to see your fabulous race day outfit, your pain face as you cross the finish line, your awesome finisher’s swag, and your rockin’ post-race celebration with your fave running BFFs! Pictures always add fun and flair, and they can help to break the text of your report up into more manageable/ readable segments. Additionally, post-race photo shoots are ridiculously fun, and they leave you with documentation of sorts of great times and hilarious memories. Just don’t use screen shots of your official race photos that you didn’t actually purchase.
5. Lessons Learned
Tell us about what you learned out there. What went really well, and what would you do differently next time? Did your training adequately prepare you for this race? What did this race experience teach you about yourself? Personally, I have found that chronicling all of this is useful for sorting it all out in my head and making plans for moving forward and doing it better next time. And it just kind of makes you feel like a thoughtful and mature adult, which is always big win for a hopeless unruly child at heart like myself.
6. What Did You Think of the Event?
Other runners are counting on your race reports to glean information for planning their own race schedules and training plans. We want to know about the event itself! Did you find it to be well-organized? Did everything run smoothly? If you had it to do all over again would you leave the hotel an hour earlier in order to find parking that wasn’t 5 miles from the start line? Was it worth doing again at all? Did this race have the friendliest, most enthusiastic spectators ever? Did the aid stations run out of water and leave you devastatingly dehydrated? Did you get some awesome swag for winning your age group?
Your race report is an opportunity to offer a well-deserved plug for a truly fantastic event or to provide constructive feedback for one that did not quite live up to your expectations. Trust me, other people considering doing that same race you did are itching to know what you thought of it and they will appreciate that your report includes a brief review of the event.
So there you have it, a simple 6 step guide to writing the most informative, entertaining, fun-filled race report in the history of the interwebs, and if you’re lucky you just might win free shoes for it!
Happy race reporting, and good luck all of our fabulous contest entrants! We can’t wait to hear from you!