I'm going to write a lot about racing in upcoming posts - what you should do before a race and during a race - but what about after? Of course, there's the cool-down jog and stretching, but you should always take time to think about your race. What went well? What didn't go well? Was there anything that surprised you?
Part of thinking about the race is the course itself. Hopefully you got a chance to run all or part of it before the race, but now that you raced on it, you can start to develop strategies for when you run it next time, or at least when you run a similar course next time.
When did you pass people on the course? On the uphills? On the downhills? When did people pass you? More importantly, when you passed people, did you finish the race ahead of them? Or did they pass you back later? Same for when people passed you.
Lots to learn from every race - I find that I use things I learned 25 years ago sometimes, so be sure to put all of this info in the back of your mind for later....