Tag Archives: race day

Race Day Etiquette: Runners and Walkers

Race day can be a stressful time.  Whether you’re chasing a new PR, trying a new distance or just easing back into things from an injury, adrenaline is flowing and the race environment can race daybe electric.  You’ve trained, you’ve fueled, you’ve arrived and you’re ready to rock.  Here are a few things that can help ensure both you and every other participant has a great race day experience.

Respect your corral.  Line up in the correct one, if you’re assigned.  If there aren’t corral assignments, ask around and try to line up with a group that has the same goal time.  If you plan on running 10:00 miles refrain from starting with your friend who will be running 8:00s.  Why?  Slower runners at the front can cause traffic jams.  Faster runners will be forced to pass, adding distance and costing valuable seconds when aiming for a new PR.

Water Stop:  If you’re drinking, stay close to the tables and don’t crowd at the first one, you’ll get faster, smoother service further down.  If you’re not thirsty, stay in the middle and keep moving.  No matter where you decide to grab hydration, know what’s going on around you before coming to a complete stop.  If you can’t get fluids down smoothly while running, try a power walk or step to the side.  Done drinking?  Try to aim that empty cup towards a trash can.

Walking:  Walkers are racers, too.  Just like at a water stop, if you’re going to take a walking break, make sure those around know it’s coming.  Make for the edge of the course, put a hand up or even shout it out.  This will prevent you from being run over or into and keep you out of another’s race day way.

On course:  Stay skinny.  Whether you’re running or walking, stick to traveling one or two wide.  Courses are often on narrow roads or trails, sometime with moving traffic only a cone’s width away.  Lining up three or four across and not allowing enough room for someone to pass can irritate other participants and cost them valuable seconds they’ve worked hard to shave off.

Finish:  One of the best parts of race day is the Finisher photo right after you receive that fancy new bling.  If you’re waiting for a friend to come through for a photo-op, step to the side or even consider a location away from the hustle and bustle.

Snacks:  We all need to refuel, rehydrate and relax after a race.  Take only what’s been allocated for you in the finisher area.  Those who finish behind you deserve the same nutrition, fluids and goodies you do.

Pack these race day etiquette tips in your drop bag and everyone will have a smooth event experience.

Coach Meredith

Get Ready for Race Day

Training for a race takes a lot of time and effort and there’s nothing worse than working hard for a race day that doesn’t end the way we want.  Here are some of my favorite tips for runners who are preparing to run their best from Start to Finish.

A big part of running your best race is to realize that race day actually begins long before you’ve picked up your number.  Planning and practice are key elements of a good performance.  These are a few things to do before race day arrives so you can put your best foot forward.

Practice with different sources of hydration on training runs and test out different fuels for both before and during the race to make sure you know what’s best for your body.  Compare hydrating with water versus as sports drink.  Try eating a gel versus a bar on those long training outings.  Learning how your insides respond to different nourishment means avoiding digestive issues, staying hydrated and giving yourself the best chance you can to put together the race race dayyou want.

As race weekend approaches, study the course.  If you know what’s coming at you, you can mentally and physically prepare for it.  What mile brings the hills and which ones are flat?  Is it out-and-back, point-to-point or a loop?  Where are the hydration stops, Port-a-Potties and gels?  How about the bands?  Are you going to need your own music?  Anything can happen out there and it’s important know what support will be around you on the course.

Once you’ve nailed down your race day hydration and fueling plan and learned the course, take the final few days before race morning to rest up and prepare your body to work hard.  Tapering, carb loading, stretching, massaging and getting plenty of sleep in the days leading up to your event are some guaranteed ways to perform at your best.

It’s race weekend, what’s next?

After you check out the expo and pick up your number, pin it on clothing you’ve run in at least once before, are familiar with and want to be photographed in.  Being uncomfortable is a surefire way to make your race more difficult and the last thing you want is to be distracted by a chafing seam.

Get up race morning and follow the fueling and hydration plan you developed while training. Stick with what you know works!  You’ll want to head to the corrals early enough to have time to stretch out and get your body going with an easy jog and a few strides.

Once you’re off, be careful to start slowly.  The start of any race is an exciting moment.  With all that adrenaline pumping, it’s easy to get swept up in the group and go out at a fast pace.  Burning through your fuel in the first mile doesn’t leave much for the rest of the race, especially when you’ll need it for a strong finish.  It’s much easier to increase your pace on legs that are ready to go than maintain it on legs that are tired.

After you’ve beaten the urge to rush out of the starting chute and settled into your run, start thinking about the course you’ve studied.  Hug corners, run the inside of curves and take the shortest route possible from Start to Finish.  Courses are measured this way.  Taking wide turns or weaving through groups can add to both your finish time and total distance.

Most importantly, trust your training. You’ve put in the hard work to have a successful race.  Believe in yourself, take a few of these tips with you and you’ll be hard to beat come race day!

Coach Meredith

Prepare for next race with us!  Email Info@FitNicePT.com for more information on all the ways we can help you rock your next race day.

*This was originally posted here*