I always know that the year has been zooming by when the City2Surf creeps up this quickly! This weekend’s City2Surf will see our New Image team join the throngs for another year of the (sometimes) fun run. While we’ve been training hard, it’s important to get a head start the week of a running race with a good last minute preparation.
Here are my top tips for getting the most out of race week to ensure you achieve your personal best at this weekend’s City2Surf:
- Taper your training – 5 days out from the race is not the time to embark on a serious training program. Instead, now is the time for cutting back your mileage. By tapering off your training you are giving your body a recovery period to allow for the intensity of race day. A couple of light runs, with a good warm-up and cool down followed by stretching, is all that is needed before Sunday. Try not to complete a running session within 72 hours of the race so you are feeling nice and fresh come Sunday morning.
- No booze – Do I need to say this? Honestly, you will feel much better on race day if you hold off on all alcohol until after the race. It’s only five days, you can do it! Trust me, a beer tastes much better after you’ve pounded out the 14kms.
- Get plenty of sleep – Do as I say not as I do on this one! It is really important leading into race day to try and get in your 7 or 8 hours sleep a night if you can. I know it’s far FAR easier said then done, but we all know how much a few good nights of sleep improves our performance across all areas of our lives.
- Wear the right gear – It’s probably too late to be switching over your running shoes, but I highly recommend investing in a good pair of socks. They will make all the difference to how those feet are feeling for every metre after that tenth kilometre. Thorlos are the best and, while pricey, are worth the money. Chafing is also a nightmare on a longer race, so a pair of running tights such as Skins is a great idea. If you don’t feel like having everything on display, you can wear them under your running shorts.
- Get your race pack early – Speaking from experience, it’s quite stressful picking it up on the morning of the race. Rifling through the crowds in a rush to pick up your bib and time chip is a less than ideal race day preparation. If you haven’t been sent your pack because you entered after June 16, you can pick up your race pack at the City2Surf Expo at Town Hall on Thursday, Friday or Saturday.
- Be prepared – Work out this week how you will get to the race and how long it will take you. It is no good just making it to the starting line in the nick of time feeling worn out and frazzled before you’ve even hit your stride. For our New Image runners, we’ve organised a bus to take us to and from the race to avoid any stress on the day. If you are not joining us on the bus I really recommend you consider public transport.
Fuel up – Load up on carbs in the 24 hours going into the race. A healthy pasta dish on Saturday night is perfect, followed by a light breakfast before the race on Sunday morning. Avoid heavy fatty food or anything that you never normally eat. Race day is not a good time to discover that bananas give you a tummy ache. And don’t forget to drink lots of water in the days leading up to the race.