Race Preparation

A week from tomorrow at 10 am I’ll be toeing the starting line in Moab.  The Canyonlands Half Marathon will be my second half and I’m really looking forward to it.  Josh and I are tenitively planning to drive up to the mountains on Thursday night and then drive the rest of the way to Moab on Friday morning. That way, even with the disasterous I-70, we can still get there early enough for Josh to get in a ride.  We haven’t been back to Moab since we got engaged there in November of 2007.  Josh was very romantic and proposed under the Delicate Arch.

This is a hilly course and I’m not really going to have any sort of altitude advantage.  I’m trying to remind myself that this is just a training run because it really is. Nashville is the big race!  I’m still hoping that I can come in faster than I did in my first half and finish around 2 hours. Realistic for a course this hilly?  Probably not but a girl can hope. 

At least this is a nice small race, one of the smallest I’ve ever done. The entry is completely by lottery, so there are only 4000 entries allowed. Lucikly I was able to get in with TNT.

I sent my mentees some tips for race preparation. I thought I’d share them with everyone else. I’m not expert but these are a few things that I’ve learned:

1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. You cannot hydrate the night before or the morning of the race. You need to make sure that you are drinking lots of water and Gatorade in the coming week before the race. Typically for every two bottles of water I drink, I drink a bottle of Gatorade. If you drink only water and too much of it, you risk depleting your electrolytes which is bad. So please make sure you also drink some sort of electrolyte beverage in addition to water. Also this may be gross but, if your pee is clear you’ve had too much. You only want to drink enough to have light yellow pee. If you have dark pee, keep drinking.

2. Rest. Don’t do any crazy strenuous leg exercises. You want your legs to feel fresh and ready to go. Also, get some sleep. If you are feeling really tired, take that nap or go to bed early. You won’t be sleeping the night before (trust me) so you want to make sure that you are as rested as you can be.

3. Eat! I mean it. This is not the week to watch your calorie or carbohydrate intake. Carb-loading the night before the race is not going to do a thing for you. You actually need to build up your carbs over several days, even a week or more. So enjoy that bread, pasta, etc. You can start tomorrow night at Jianna’s.

4. Pack everything you need on race day in a separate bag from the rest of your weekend gear. Once you check into the hotel and get all of your stuff from the expo, lay out your outfit, shoes, sock, even your gels for the race on the floor. Pin your bib onto your shirt so you don’t have to do it in the morning. Put the toe tag on your shoe as well. You’re probably going to be anxious enough as it is that morning without having to get to the starting line and realize you forgot something. When you’re laying everything out, if you discover you’ve forgotten something at home, you’ll have time that evening to get to a store.

5. Don’t eat anything new. Bring whatever you normally eat before our long runs with you. You don’t want to be scrambling that morning trying to find something or having to settle for something you’re not used to. It could really upset your stomach.

6. Enjoy! Take in the moment and your accomplishment.

I’m excited to get away for the weekend!  It’s going to be a short trip but it should be a lot of fun.

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