If you’re “ready to run,” this to-do list is for you!
Tanya Boyer, publisher of Rocky Mountain Running & Triathlon Magazine and race director for The Pink Series, shares a few reminders.
Participation in 5K road race events has soared in popularity, and is probably the favorite first race for beginners. Five kilometers, or 3.1 miles, is long enough to provide a challenge, yet not so long that it becomes intimidating. Elite runners and seasoned marathoners also participate in the 5K to test their strength and speed. KSL has even joined in on the 5K craze and is a sponsor of the SLC Komen Race for the Cure (www.komenslc.org) on May 7, at the Gateway Mall. Komen raises money for education, support, and treatment programs for breast cancer. As a participant you are supporting a larger cause and running with hundreds of other people who care about the cause and about a healthy lifestyle.
If you are ready to run this weekend, join The Pink 5K (www.thepinkseries.com) in Alpine, Utah, a ladies only run presented by DownEast Basics. The Pink 5K will donate to Girls on the Run SLC, a youth development program for elementary school aged girls.
For these and any other 5K run, here are 5 to-do items for race morning:
#1 – LAY OUT YOUR GEAR THE NIGHT BEFORE
It may sound like elementary school, but lay out your clothing and gear the night before so you are not rushing around in the morning. You are more likely to forget something during a rush. Pin your bib number on your shirt – the simple chore of finding safety pins on race morning can cause unnecessary stress. Make sure your timing chip, if the race is using one, is secure following the instructions given to you. Items to lay out can include: shirt, shorts, shoes, socks, bib number, sunglasses, sunscreen, lip balm, watch, and water. Check the forecast for race day to make sure you will be wearing appropriate clothing and will not be too hot or too cold. Also, it isn’t the best idea to wear new clothing to a race. Buy that cute outfit ahead of time and go on a couple training runs to make sure it doesn’t irritate your skin.
#2 – SLEEP WELL
Chances are you are going to be nervous the night before a race, and may not well. This just means you are pumped and excited to run. Don’t worry, one night of interrupted sleep shouldn’t affect your performance. While you should go to bed early the night before a race, it is most important to sleep well the week leading to the race and most especially the second to last night before.
#3 – EAT A GOOD BREAKFAST
Just like a car needs gas, runners need fuel. What you eat, or don’t eat, can make or break your running; the most foolish thing to do on race morning would be to skip breakfast. Be sure to feed your body good foods high in carbohydrates and protein, and low in fat, but something you know you can stomach before a run. In other words, don’t try grandma’s new red pepper omelet before your 5K. Click here (http://studio5.ksl.com/index.php?autostart=y&nid=56&recommend=true&sid=12962062) to see a short list of breakfasts for runners.
#4 – ARRIVE EARLY
Don’t exert all your energy before the race even starts by trying to find a parking spot and then rushing to the start line. Know the designated race parking spots ahead of time, study directions to the venue, and then plan to arrive early. Factor in traffic and road construction, if necessary. This will allow you time to warm-up and enjoy the pre-race routine, and will help you start the actual race in a more relaxed state.
#5 – RELAX AND ENJOY THE RUN
Races are meant to be fun. Whether it’s your first or your fiftieth race, crossing that finish line is an unforgettable feeling. Soak up the accomplishment and revel in the atmosphere. If you don’t hit your goal time, don’t be discouraged. It happens to the best, and only makes you more determined to keep training hard. Go home and sign up up for your next race. To see a complete list of running events, visit the Race Guide at www.rockymtnrunning.com
Tanya Boyer is the publisher of Rocky Mountain Running & Triathlon Magazine and race director for The Pink Series. Her main job, however, is that of mommy to three young children and wife to the most patient man in the world. Running and triathlon are her way of staying young and mobile.
Rocky Mountain Running & Triathlon Magazine is an information source for runners and triathletes in the Mountain States. Visit www.rockymtnrunning.com to learn more.