- Kerry Sutton
Half Marathon: 8 tips for getting it right on the day
Do’s and don’ts
⦁ Make sure you are well hydrated a few days before the race. It’s too late to try to hydrate the morning of the race. Be aware of what you eat and drink the days before your race. This will affect your performance on the day.
⦁ Sleep well the few nights before. A rested body will perform better.
⦁ Know yourself with regards to when to eat breakfast. If you are someone who can’t run just after you have eaten, then wake up early and eat in time for it to have started to digest. Do fuel yourself well in the morning. Have a breakfast of slow burning carbs eg. Porridge with nuts and honey. Have a banana or gel about 20 mins before you start. Try this in training.
⦁ Arrive early. Give yourself time to register, pin on your number and work out where to go to the start. You will probably be a bit nervous and it’s easy to get flustered, so give yourself time.
⦁ Take clothes you can throw away at the start line. You don’t want to be cold as you wait for the start gun, so wear additional clothes you don’t mind throwing off and which then are collected and given to charity.
⦁ Do warm up, do some active stretching before you start.
⦁ Do enjoy yourself.
⦁ Don’t try anything new on race day. Don’t wear any clothes you haven’t run in before, as they may chafe or ride up and be uncomfortable. Don’t eat anything you haven’t eaten in training. If you normally train without eating don’t suddenly eat loads at the aid stations of the race, you won’t know how your body will react. Use the same shoes and socks you have trained in. If you want to change your shoes do so at least 3/ 4 weeks before your race.
⦁ Don’t go off too fast. The adrenaline will be coursing through your veins and you will want to keep up with the wave of people you are running with. It’s easy to get caught up with it all and go too fast. You will pay for this later in the race. Be tactical and stick to your plan. Know the pace you normally train at and be strict with yourself. If you run with a Garmin know what pace you want to stick at.
Savour the day, the crowd and the atmosphere. It’s magical.