How to Prep for a Race

Sweaty Stats: I did it!  The SD Rock and Roll Half Marathon was Sunday morning and I felt great crossing the finish line!

I’ll have a race recap up tomorrow, but today I want to focus on the prep that goes into getting ready for race day.  I signed up for the race, I trained for months, and (most importantly) I bought my race day shirt, but there’s still more that goes into getting ready for that early morning wakeup call on race day.  I have a bit of a routine to get ready mentally and physically.

First Up:  The Expo

Rock and Roll SD Expo

I really enjoy going to race expos, walking the aisles of running goodies, and getting even more excited for race day.  I know a lot of people try to get in and out of the expo to avoid the crowds, but I feel that it really helps get me mentally prepared for the race.  Seeing how many people are out there and ready to rock their own race really pumps me up!

SD Rock and Roll Expo

Now I totally understand that for those top runners that are running races every month (or more!) then this becomes very routine, but for us normal Joe’s that only do a couple a year…I say enjoy the whole experience!

Rock and Roll Expo Swag

So we picked up our race bibs, picked up some goodies from the expo, and are headed out…now what?

Next Up: Dinner Time

This year we had a late start to the expo, so when we left it was just about dinner time.  We had already planned on having pasta for dinner…and what better place than The Old Fashioned Spaghetti Factory?!  Since we rarely eat pasta, I forget how delicious it is…and this dinner was no exception.

Spaghetti factoryDid somebody say carb loading?  Top one is mine, and bottom is the hubby’s.

Finally – Getting everything ready…and I mean everything!

I always get everything out and ready the night before.  There’s nothing more frustrating than being up early on race day and looking for your favorite sports bra.  There’s enough energy that goes into the actual running, so you don’t want to waste any of it on looking for your gear.

race day gear

I have my Nike running capris, new* Nike running top, Gap sports bra, Nike socks, my custom ID Nike Free running shoes, Knockaround polarized sunglasses, running phone case, earbuds, and a Run Now bracelet in memory of the Boston marathon that we got at the expo.  I spared you full view of my underwear…their hiding under the sports bra in case your wondering!

*Disclosure on the new top- I already have other running tanks like this new bright one, so that’s the only reason I wore something new.  DO NOT wear anything new on race day.  Been there, done that even though I knew I shouldn’t have and I suffered the entire race!

Aside from getting my clothes and accessories all laid out, I also have my prepping and fueling goods ready to go too!

Prepping for a race

Sunscreen, chap stick, and chaffing stick are a must for long runs, so race day is no exception.  I use the friction block stick along the back of my ankle where my shoe may rub, and all along where my sports bra would rub (you get the picture).  And yes, I wore deodorant but forgot to sneak it into the pic.

race day fuelI had all my fuel ready to go too.  About 1 1/2 hours before the race I had some pretzel sticks with peanut butter, and then about 30 minutes before I had 1 black cherry blok and 1 margarita blok.  The black cherry has more caffein, and the margarita has more sodium.  I sweat VERY salty and have found that this helps me feel stronger throughout the run.  I took the sportbeans with me, but didn’t use them.  In between the morning munching I drank water and Gatorade.

Clif blok to go I take 2 bloks with me in a sandwich bag to fuel during my run.  I cut the top of the baggie off so that it’s easier to get while I’m running, and since they’re sticky, they don’t fall out so it’s a win-win for all!

Along with all of this prep, I make sure to drink lots of water throughout the day and try to get to sleep at a decent time.

ready for race daySo here we go!  The race recap will be up tomorrow 🙂

What do you do to prep for races?

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