We want every one to have a successful race day! Here are some frequent race week faux pas you’ll need to avoid, plus, some solid gold advice on how to avoid them.
1. Changing the plan
In race week, it’s easy to start questioning whether you’ve done enough, particularly if you start listening to other runners about what they have been up to. Please don’t listen to them, it will do you no good at all! Instead, stick to the plan and continue doing everything that has previously worked for you. Doing a panicked extra session won’t make your body any fitter so close to race day, you’ll just risk starting the race tired or even injury!
2. Not eating and drinking normally
Obviously we know you won't be out on the razz during race week, but so many races are ruined by a sudden change of diet and we don’t know why people do it to themselves? Is it the temptation to try something new or eat a little less because you aren’t running as much in race week? Maybe… But trust us, it’s vital to stick to the foods and fuels that have worked for you in training.
3. Ignoring your race pace and strategy
Throughout training you should have developed a pace that you feel familiar with and comfortable running. Maybe its adrenaline, a lack of patience or just a mad competitive streak, but so many races are ruined by starting too fast. Many runners cross the finish line at a lackluster pace clocking a disappointing time. So focus on the most important race in the field – your own. You know what time you can run – so do it! Even if you start the race feeling unstoppable, don't speed up until you've reached halfway. It is more important and frankly more satisfying to finish strong!
4. Being unorganized
Once again, it sounds so simple. But having your kit laid out, knowing the weather forecast and understanding how you are getting to your race are all important factors that contribute to a successful race day. Make a checklist to ensure nothing is left to chance. A stress free build up, will relax both your mind and muscles. You are far more likely to clock an impressive time if you've been organised.
5. Being unrealistic
This is the most important advice of all! Make sure you race for a time that’s within your grasp. Don't be inflexible. For example, if race-day is insanely hot, you’ll need to alter your goal accordingly. It is equally important to try to not to set limits - just realistic strategies. If the training has been great and you feel good in the final third of the race, anything could happen! Go for it! There are no rules in the final third – just commit to those last miles and believe.