Sunday, April 25, 2010

Race List

Several times in the last year, someone I know has run a first half or full marathon. It really excites me to see others give a longer race a try. I am not just excited for them for the sake of the race itself, but for what it represents. Discipline, commitment, hard work and a bit of sacrifice. Sure, it is always interesting to me to hear about the actual race itself, but I get a lot more of charge as I talk to people about how they prepared.

As folks usually get close to a race, many of them ask me for tips on the race. If you are reading this and planning to run in your first half or full marathon, consider these 10 tips the best bit of advice I can give either through personal experience or from extensive reading.

1) Only wear things you have run long distances in before. Race day is not the time to test a new shoe, short or shirt. You never know if they will rub you the wrong way.

2) Speaking of rubbing the wrong way, put some vaseline on areas of your body that you would not want to have rubbed raw (if you know what I mean!!!!). Look at the finish line and all of the bloody chests of the guys and you will see first hand what I am talking about!

3) Don't eat anything the night before that you have not battle tested with a long run in the past. Port o Potties are a rare commodity at mile 7...and you don't want to have to stop anyways!

4) Get up a few hours early, eat and drink two or three cups of coffee. The coffee will (if you are like most humans) clear out the pipes...see advisement number 3!!

5) Set up all your gear including your food the night before. Wire your chip into your shoe, put your race bib on your shorts and get your shirt ready. It will make you feel good the night before and give you time to run out if you forgot something.

6) Don't put anything in your body during the race that you have not battle tested. You never know how a new drink or gel may impact your system.

7) Start the race slow and work your self up to pace by the third mile. You don't want to blow up half way through and have to walk. Many people start too fast and end up cramped up and shuffling by mile 18.

8) Wear a few layers of clothes that you can throw off and not worry about if the race is a cold start.

9) Over drinking or over eating is just as bad as under eating and under drinking. Most people would tell you they force themselves to eat on the 30 minutes and drink on the 15 minutes for a longer race. Even if they don't feel hungry or thirsty. That is GOOD advice.

10) Always hand slap or high five the little kids on the route...they get a kick out of it...and so will you!

I am back on the road and put in a solid weekend. I have to put in a few long runs this week if I want to beat my last month total. The cold I had really kept me down all week.

Run hard!


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