Friday, April 24, 2015

Fitness Friday: Pre-Race Rituals

 
 
We are T-2 days from the St. Luke's Half Marathon, so I thought today would be a good day to talk about my pre-race rituals.  Runners are a quirky bunch and I'm sure everyone has their own little idiosyncrasies.  I don't think mine are too weird, but I'll let you be the judge of that!
 
1 Week Before Race
  • Increase water/fluid intake.  This is an area of my health that I regularly slack on, so a week before a goal race I try to make sure I'm drinking more water throughout the day.  Unfortunately, I did not do so well this week.  Some hectic days combined with my absentmindedness left me definitely lacking some days.  I'm usually so much more focused on the kids' needs throughout the day, that I end up slacking on my own.  Plus, drinking more water means more bathroom breaks, which I also often don't have time for!
  • Start scoping out race day weather.  Weather can change this far out, but I like to check throughout the week so I can generally prepare myself for what to expect.  So far, it looks like race day weather will start out around 40 degrees Sunday morning.  I think I'll probably wear a sweatshirt over my tank top and shorts and check a bag at the last possible moment.
  • Get more sleep.  Ah, another area I am continually behind on.  I tried to get more sleep this week but my early work hours combined with my night-owl tendencies seemed to get the best of me yet again!
 
2-3 Days Before Race
  • Reduce intake of high fiber foods.  The last thing anyone wants on race day are loose stools!Enough said. 
  • Clip toenails.  Is that one gross?!  It's not like I have long, gnarly toenails but I've forgotten to cut them at times and there is nothing more uncomfortable than cut, bleeding feet while running. 
 
Day Before Race
  • Sleep in.  I never get much sleep the night of the race so I always try to get more 2 nights prior.
  • Pick out race day outfit.  Check weather one last time and plan clothing accordingly.  I don't really adhere to the 'nothing new on race day' rule.  What can I say, I live on the edge!  I've worn new shirts or socks that I bought specifically for a race without ever having worn them before.  The only thing I probably wouldn't wear brand new would be a pair of shoes.  The past few races I've been wearing the same sports bra, which now feels lucky.  Is that weird?!
  • Charge Garmin.  This race has pacers and I think I'm going to run with one of the groups, but I still want to keep track of my splits myself.
  • EAT PASTA!  I eat the same thing every night before a race: Spaghetti and meatballs and a bottle of Gatorade.  Old school + Italian, there you go.
Sometimes, I let my cats pick out my race day outfit 
 
Race Day
  • Eat 2 hours prior to race start.  In addition to eating the same thing every night before a race I also always eat the same breakfast: A bagel (plain) and a bottle of Gatorade.  I also drink at least a bottle of water.
  • Go to the bathroom.  ESSENTIAL.  I'm talking #2 here.  And that's all I'll say about that.
  • Take an Imodium (optional).  I usually only do this before a half marathon, not shorter distance races.  I don't think I've mentioned it here before but I have a long history of IBS.  Maybe some day I'll do some posts on it.  But, running long distances often exacerbates digestive issues, even in healthy people.  I just do not have time for bathroom stops during the race so this ensures that.  And I've never been constipated a day in my life, ever (TMI?!) so there's no lingering after effects for me.
  • Double/triple check that my shoes are tied!
 
Post Race
  • EAT!  Anything and everything I want.  VEGAN TREATS!!!
  • Thank my family and friends.  For standing outside, often in less than ideal conditions, cheering me on and waiting for me at the finish line!
  • NAP
  • Sign up for the next race :)
 
And that's me.  Quirks and all.  Hope I didn't scare any of you off.  I'll be back with a recap next week!  Have a great weekend!
 
 
Your turn!  What are some of your pre-race rituals?!  The weirder the better :)

14 comments:

  1. These are great tips, Jill. And the pedi is essential. Better clipped short than damaged and later falling off, which may happen anyway. Have a great weekend! Good luck with your race. Be safe and have fun!

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    1. Thanks so much Kelly! Had no issues with my feet and the race went well!

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  2. I do many of these as well. and you know I have my brazilian on the list too :D

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    1. Ugh, I actually really need a wax. Thanks for reminding me!

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  3. I definitely do a lot of these things. When you do well in a race, you remember what you did leading up to it and it just becomes a ritual. Good luck this weekend!!!!!!

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    1. Thanks Sarah! I actually switched sports bras at the last minutes bc I had one that matched my shirt better. HAHAHA Didn't seem to impact my race so that was a relief!

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  4. I get neurotic about checking weather forecasts! Two nights before race day is the more important night to get sleep for anyone and I usually try to sneak in a nap the day or two before, too.

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    1. Yes weather is Everything! And I totally have heard the thing about sleeping well 2 nights before so I always try to get some good shut eye then.

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    1. Thanks Jenny! Race went well. Now onto summer racing season and hopefully seeing you at the BWC!

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  6. I can't eat pasta the night before. I like a steak or hamburger the night before.

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    1. So interesting! I usually eat a protein heavy meal most nights. I wonder what would happen if I did it before a race? Maybe I'll try it out sometime on a shorter distance race!

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  7. I cannot wait to hear how it went. Hope all of your rituals worked to your advantage!

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    1. Ah thanks! I had a pretty good race :)

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