Is it race week!? How to prep for your best race day yet in 5 steps
- Run easy! Don’t try to break any records on your taper week runs. Maintain conversational pace running and keep heart rate as low as possible. Focus on recovery so you can expend your energy on race day when it counts.
- Focus on sleep! Use the time you would have been getting up early to train to get an extra hour of sleep. Sleep is a powerful recovery tool, so make it count.
- Eat quality foods, and eat lots of them. Continue to eat as you would throughout your training cycle, but focus on consuming slightly higher quantities of fuel, especially high-quality carbohydrate sources, as you get closer to race day.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Make sure to consume plenty of both water and low-sugar electrolyte sources throughout the week. Keep an eye on the race day weather forecast so you can adjust your hydration plans accordingly, especially if heat is predicted.
- Visualize your race day plan. Take a few moments throughout the week to visualize your plan from how you’ll feel when you wake up, to your pre-race breakfast, transportation to the event, your state of mind at the start, and then how you want to feel at each critical stage of the race. Don’t forget to be thankful for a body that is able to carry you from start to finish, and celebrate the hard work you’ve put in to reach your goal.
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– Dr. Andrea Smiley, PT, DPT