Today’s Tri Talk Tuesday topic: Race Day Prep is very fitting right now, 18 days shy of IMMT!
When thinking about RACE DAY PREP I can’t help but relate it to my preparation in these next coming weeks. In my opinion preparation is everything. If you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail. I have always been super prepared for race day, but NOTHING compares to being prepared for an Ironman.
If you have been reading my blog, you know that I am physically prepared for my big race i.e. swimming, biking and running my face off:) Here are some ways I prepare for a race, that aren’t necessarily training specific. I need to be EXTRA prepared for IMMT since I am driving 6.5 hours to get there and I can’t just ‘run home’ if I forget something.
Read the athlete guide over and over. I have not received the guide yet for IMMT, but I am anxiously awaiting it’s arrival in my inbox! I always read my race guides cover to cover just to make sure I’m not missing anything.
Know the course. If you aren’t able to physically practice the course, know the course in your mind. For example, I always study the swim course to know where the turns are. When it gets to race morning, I warm up by going around a few buoys to get a feel for the course. I also like to study elevation profiles for the bike! Recently, I have been studying the IMMT course like crazy… reading race reports, blog posts, watching YouTube videos, etc. I feel like I’ve raced the course I’ve read so much about it!
Set your goals and say them out loud. Part of my race prep is always setting goals for my race. For example, I know the swim, bike and run splits I want to achieve on race day. If I have a goal of placing in my age group, I make sure to tell people, it holds me accountable! If you let other people in on your goals, you will have more motivation to achieve them!
Make a race day checklist. This is super important to making sure all of your ducks are in a row for race day! I am a huge fan of checklists, in everyday life and with racing (type A over here). Making a checklist helps you forget the ‘little things’ like your racing bib waist strap or body glide. You want to sweat the small stuff when it comes to racing!
Know + practice your race day nutrition and timing. Make sure you have practiced your race fueling plan (i.e. how many gels and when to take them), so you aren’t questioning things on race day! Know when you need to take a shot block or a sip of sports drink on the run. Know everything!! Nutrition and timing can make or break your race.
Fine tune your body. This involves professional deep tissue massage, self massage, stretching, epsom salt baths, anything that gets your muscles fine tuned for race day. I have all of my appointments lined up from now until race day. I want my body to be in the best condition possible!
Fine tune your equipment. I recommend getting a bike ‘check up’ at least a week before the race. Even if you think your bike is in perfect working order, it can’t hurt to get things checked by a mechanic. Also, make sure your goggles are in working order, same with your wetsuit! You can never be TOO safe. This goes for your GPS units too!
Visualize and stay positive. The days leading up to the race, it’s important to visualize yourself on the course and even finishing the race. There is power in positivity. If you BELIEVE you can do something and you visualize it in your own mind, trust me, you can do amazing things!
What are you race prep tips? Feel free to share!