And just like that, we are one month out from the Chicago Spring Half Marathon! I’m not going to lie to you and say I excelled at my training or didn’t skip a run (or four) but when it comes to being this close, I don’t mess around. So here are some of the main things I do in order to prepare for race day!
1. Stretch often
As race day gets closer, I tend to put everything I have into my training meaning it’s even easier to get hurt. In order to avoid a pulled muscle or a sore body, I stretch as much and as often as possible. Of course, this doesn’t 100% guarantee I won’t trip and roll my ankle (I’m a clumsy human so this isn’t uncommon) but it helps ensure a speedy recovery from the intense training.
2. Cut back on the sweets (and alcohol)
I am an avid believer that diets are silly and it is okay to eat sweets, cheese, and whatever else tickles your fancy as long as it is in moderation (because what is the point in living if you don’t get to enjoy what you love?). But when I am a couple weeks out, I realize it is especially important to be putting the right things in my body. So although I may still have a piece of the donut someone brought into work, I’m not going to go home and also have ice cream for a pre-dinner snack. Another thing I like to cut back on is alcohol (obviously). I notice a huge difference in my speed and strength and want to be the best I can come race day.
It’s underestimated how much sleep can make or break one’s race. You definitely don’t want to get sick the week before so make sure you’re getting plenty of rest (and taking your vitamins!).
4. Buy a new outfit
This one may seem silly but have you ever heard the saying “Look good, feel good”? This totally applies to running as well! Plus why wouldn’t you want an excuse to go shopping for some fun new running gear 😉 So splurge a little because you’re about to see what all of your hard work can accomplish and you deserve to look great doing it.
DISCLAIMER: Don’t buy anything new and wear it for the first time on race day! This may cause chaffing in unmentionable areas and that would be a huge buzzkill.
5. Get excited!
You’ve been mentally and physically training for months and you’re about to complete a huge accomplishment, it’s only right to get excited. You are your best cheerleader, after all.
What are some of the ways you prepare for the big day?