2. Choose secondary goals.
Most of us start races with a best-case-scenario goal in mind. That’s fine, but it should not be your only goal. You just never know what your body is going to be capable of on any given day. You can do everything right in your preparation and in your race execution and still fall short of your highest expectations because your body simply happens to be “flat” on that day.
Typically it is apparent within the first mile or two of a race whether you’re going to have a good day or a flat one. Discovering that you’re flat can be quite discouraging, but it will be less so if you have a more attainable secondary goal to fall back on.