One of the most popular posts on the blog in the past couple of years is the 6 Day Race Day Preparation Guide which gives you one simple task to handle each day in the week leading up to your race or event. Essentially, I wrote it for myself as a way to get organised, ensure I cover all my bases and then have something to refer to each and every time I race which could also be updated with feedback shared with me!
Click on a link below to go to the task for the day you’re working on:
PIN ME to find me later!
Pick your race day outfit. Something tried and tested (I know you’ve heard it a thousand times). Find everything from socks, underwear, rain jacket (it’s London) to water bottle, headphones and your favourite pair of run tights and throw them in a bag in the corner of your bedroom. If anything needs washing, get it done tonight. And don’t forget to store your wristbands / bib and paperwork with your kit so it’s easy to find on Sunday morning!
- cut your toenails!
Check transport to find your fastest / easiest route; keep an eye out for tube line closures or if the start line isn’t too far from home you can consider hiring a Boris Bike and use it as a warm up! Leave enough time in your journey plan to allow for delays and give you time to get to the bag drop (where there potentially will be queues) and for a bathroom pit stop before the start!
You know what works for you before a morning run; it’s another one of those “stick to what you know” times. Good options are porridge, a banana or a bagel with peanut butter. Pack a snack bar in your bag for post race too! I’ve also put race fuel in this section too; if you use hydration tablets then make sure you have them packed (that good old bag you have in the corner of your bedroom all ready and waiting right?!). Usually you won’t require gels etc for a 10km race so that’s one less thing to worry about. Check you have everything you need in your cupboard at home for that epic breakfast too! If not, order a food delivery or pop to the shops in your lunch break today!
Here are some recipes for my favourite and fail safe race day breakfasts:
Avocado On Toast
2 slices High Protein Bread
1/2 ripe avocado
Optional sides / toppings: chorizo, smoked salmon or streaky bacon
Simple As: toast the bread until golden and crispy on both sides; whilst you’re doing that peel and de-stone your avocado. you can either smash it in a bowl by hand or sometimes I use a stick (hand held) mixer. Season your smashed avocado with the juice of 1/2 a lemon and a dash of black pepper. Spread your smashed avocado over your toast and sprinkle on chilli flakes. Add bacon, chorizo or smoked salmon if you’re having it!
Pimped Up Porridge
Optional toppings: any fruit you have in the fridge!
Simple As: Add oats to bowl, and add milk. Heat up as per instructions (usually 3 mins in the microwave for mine!). Once done, stir in protein powder until perfectly smooth again (add a little more milk if needed at this point). Dollop on your nut butter, sprinkle on your cacao nibs and then (if you can be bothered and / or need a pic for IG) arrange your beautifully sliced fruit on top!
Smoked Salmon, Scrambled Eggs & Avocado
2tbsp almond milk
1/2 tsp coconut oil
150g – 200g smoked salmon
…with a side of toast?!
(optional) 2 slices High Protein Bread
Simple As: add coconut oil to frying pan and heat gently till melted. Add almond milk to eggs and whisk with fork then season with salt & pepper. Pour eggs into frying pan and stir continuously until cooked to desired dryness (haha! I like mine really dry!!). Add eggs to plate, along with smoked salmon and 1/2 avocado sliced or diced! Serve with High Protein Bread to help keep you fuller for longer!
Try and wake up with enough time to eat your breakfast and then allow it to digest a little. I’m lucky in that I can literally eat on the start line and feel fine!
There are so many other options out there too so if you have any firm favourites please share them with me on Facebook or Twitter!
Double check the weather for race day (it can still change) and make sure you have options in your pile of kit for sunshine (hat / visor, suncream, shorts), rain (rain jacket, change of clothes including underwear), cold (extra layers for post run, bin bag for start line) and everything in between! Then check the weather one final time on race morning!
Can you tell when you are dehydrated on race day?! …For me, the run will feel uncomfortable, I will feel fatigued and usually have an awful headache. At this point, it’s a little too late to fix it, hence why I highlight race day hydration a couple days before you are on the start line.
Try your best to increase your fluid intake from today onwards. This will help your energy levels in the lead up to race day and keep you well hydrated! You have plenty of options including water (love me some sparkling), Vita Coco Coconut Water plus your tea and coffee counts too (although they can be dehydrating in large quantities and try to keep sugar to a minimum).
Post Exercise: Don’t forget hydration as part of your post exercise recovery routine too! I always feel like it’s helping to flush toxins / lactic acid out of my body and keeping me energised! It’s also best to sip water at regular intervals rather than consuming large amounts in one go!
Get in a little 2 – 5km run to remind your legs what they need to do! Then chill out, rest your legs and catch a movie 🙂 This is also a good time to update your GPS watch so it connects faster to the satellites on race morning (tomorrow)! I’m always the one shouting “wait, my GPS isn’t ready!”. Then all that’s left is to get a good nights sleep (if you can!).
- Check your GPS is fully charged / put in on charge overnight
- Set out your race day kit and bib in preparation for the morning
- Pack your race day bag; keeping in mind how you’ll feel post-race (hungry?!) and any extra layers or changes of clothes you might need.
You’ve done all the preparation now its time to enjoy the race itself! Then you wear your medal with pride ALL DAY LONG (and all night, I’ve heard that’s a thing!) …because race day is basically the only day you can!!
If you have anything else to add to this guide please do Contact Me, or send me a Tweet or FB comment… all my details are below!