With the race just around the corner, here’s a list of things to do, pack and think about ahead of the big dance!
Pack your gear well in advance. If you rush things, not only is it going to play on your mind that you need to get your s**t together, but it also means you just might forget something essential.
Get all your mandatory gear together and into your pack. Lay everything out on your bed and have the checklist in hand. One by one place things into your running pack so you are certain nothing is missing and it’s fresh in your mind where things are.
Organise your nutrition several days before you head to the hills. This will give you ample time to replace stuff. Yes the event expo has plenty of goodies. But if you are very particular about your fuel, then get plenty of additional or spare supplies just in case something gets lost or damaged.
Start visualising how you want the event to unfold. Mental rehearsal is a great way to prepare your mind for the task ahead and helps reduce nerves.
Talk to your support crew about when you expect to reach checkpoints, what you’ll need and what they can expect from you. If you have a well-oiled team backing you up, then a good part of the battle is won!
Spend some time looking at the course map and profile. The more you are aware of what lies ahead, the better. You need to know how long climbs are, where to turn, how far between checkpoints and where you can expect to see friends along the way.
Book your dinner venue or plan what you want to cook. It can be busy in the mountains on the eve of the race so walking into a restaurant and getting a seat can sometimes be a pain.
Get a massage! If there’s ever a time you’re going to fork out some of your hard earned and indulge in a rubdown, now is it. Don’t leave it until the night before. Have one a few days prior so you can absorb it.
Increase your sleep. In the two weeks leading up to race day, the more sleep you can get, the better. Don’t leave it all up to the last couple nights. Get ahead of the game as it will greatly impact your recovery from the training you’ve done.
The last and probably most important thing to do is make sure you enjoy the whole process. It’s not just the day of the race that makes this such a great event. It’s the nerves in the days prior. It’s the expo and checking in. It’s the camaraderie and catching up with friends before and after. Take it all in and it’ll be a life-changing experience!