Race Day Preparation Tips Every Runner Should Know
It takes months of training to properly prepare for a race. The final hours before the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler race event are crucial. Your meals, workouts, equipment, and emotional state can have a major impact on your performance. Race day morning will go by fast, so it's important to be prepared physically and mentally. Even for elite athletes, race day can be stressful. Make sure you have everything ready for the event, including your clothes, shoes, and snacks. Plan everything in advance and keep reminding yourself how hard you've worked to make this happen.
These race day preparation tips will help you get to the starting line ready to run:
Plan Your Morning
Get ready the night before. Pack your bag with energy drinks, running gear, water, sunscreen and other supplies. Bring a snack for race finish. Drink more water than usual in the days before the race. Maintain a good level of hydration throughout the day. Leave plenty of time to get to the race start. Get out of bed at least three hours before leaving home. Set multiple alarms to make sure you wake up on time.
Eat Breakfast Early
Race day isn't the best time to try new foods. Your best bet is to eat foods that you're used to. Eat breakfast at least three hours before the event. Most marathons and races start early in the morning, so you might not have enough time to eat a full breakfast. How much to eat depends on your body weight as well as on race duration and meal timing. The heavier you are and the longer the race, the more you should eat. Some athletes consume up to 1,000 calories before running events.
Don’t eat anything heavy that could cause digestive distress. Have a fruit smoothie, a banana, an energy bar, a bagel, or porridge. Meal replacement shakes are a great choice too. Stick with what works for you. This way you know how your body will react. Avoid high-fiber and high-fat foods because they may cause bloating and gas. Steer clear of onions, garlic, spices, and sauces. Keep in mind that no meal is more important this one. Eating the right foods can make all the difference. Make sure at least 80 percent of your calories come from carbohydrates.
Be Mentally Prepared
Being mentally prepared for a race is just as important as training. Trust your body. You've worked hard for this event and you're ready to perform. It's normal to be anxious, but try to calm your mind. Try deep breathing and other relaxation techniques. Perform a self massage to eliminate areas of tension and pain.
The race is just another hard long run. It’s supposed to be tough. Don’t let anything get you down. Imagine yourself getting to the starting line, feeling strong, and moving with perfect form. Visualization is one of the best ways to relax your mind and body, so use it to your advantage.
Plan the race in detail so you know what to expect. Check out the event website, gather information, and work out travel plans. The strategy you take depends on the type of race. A running event that involves tortuous uphills will require a different approach that a flat course or solitary running on quiet streets. Try to find out more about the race and then come up with a plan. Consider the location, time, rules, parking, and special conditions.
Wear Proper Gear
Stock up on clothes and shoes designed for runners. If the race takes place in the morning, dress in layers. Consider wearing a light shirt or a sweatshirt, a hoodie, sweatpants or leggings, compression socks, and a hat. Lay out your race-day clothing the night before. Most runners prefer form-fitting outfits made of lightweight synthetic materials.
Don't plan to wear new clothes or footwear on the race day. Train in your race outfit to make sure it fits you well. Choose a well-used pair of running shoes that you trained in but is under five minutes of usage. Most running shoes need to be replaced around five hundred mile.
Warm Up Properly
Warm up and stretch your muscles before the race. Get to the location early so you can do some warm up exercises. Dynamic stretching works better than static stretching before a running event. Athletes can do walking lunges, side-to-side leg swings, forward and backward arms swings, jogging in place with butt kicks, or hopping in place with locked knees. Shoulder rolls, neck rolls, high knees, and burpees are recommended too.
These moves will prepare your body for the race and prevent injuries. They also warm up your muscles and take your joints through a full range of motion. Experienced runners usually jog for 10 to 15 minutes before a race. Keep in mind that warming up too long can affect your performance and cause fatigue.
If you are planning to run the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run or any race the most important time is the 48 hours pre-race preparation. Pre-run meal, having your gear ready and reducing your stress will determine how well you run the race.