Sunday, September 27, 2009

What should I know before my race?

Maybe Sunday wouldn't seem quite as bad if I looked at it like the chance to start the week off on the right foot.  I usually trend toward feeling crummy from about 5:00 on Sunday night because it means fun time is over and work time is about to start.  Maybe I can think about all the great things I have ahead (and a few of the not-so-great ones) and maybe I can plan for a good week.


Lots going on.  I'm still totally riding the wave of self esteem that came from my 10 miler yesterday.  My foot, unfortunately, is feeling the pain BIG TIME.  That pesky (and huge) blister that showed up a few weeks ago is back with a vengeance and I can't really put weight on the bottom of my foot right now.  I'm trying to be really good about taking care of it so I don't have to hop 13.1 miles on one leg next weekend.  I went and bought a bunch of first aid supplies at the Wal earlier, and my foot is currently swaddled like a three week old baby.  Little burrito foot.  Hope it gets well SOON.  According to my training plan, I only have a few short runs this week and that's good news for my blister.  Looks like a 4 miler, a walk day and then a 2 miler.  Easy peasy, as long as my foot skin stays intact.  I'm getting so excited for Sunday.

I also went in to the running store to ask about why this foot blister is happening, and I discovered it's because of my socks.  YOU GUYS, why didn't somebody tell me that I need to be running in an all polyester sock?  No, I'm not blaming you (well, only partially--ha) because I know the way I am, and I know people asked me about socks and I just heard "poly" and I thought that poly blend would work... meaning cotton-poly blend, meaning BAD.  I guess the little cotton scrapies got to me and effed things up, so now I have this wound the size of Texas on my right foot.  Anyhoo, I bought some good socks at the running store and now we're good to go.

Hey, speaking of Texas my friend Sarah from Texas is going to be here in California all week visiting.  I think I'm going to see her and my other dance studio buddies from high school on Thursday night for dinner.  That's one of the good things this week.  It's been a long time since I've seen any of them.  I love being with old friends where you just sink back into whatever conversations you were having in 1997 like comfortable easy chairs.  Ahhhh... Looking forward to it.

The bad things?  Well, they're not bad but I have to teach a tech workshop for teachers at my school on Wednesday and then attend an after-workshop meeting which I feel kinda anxious about... and then grades are due on Friday.  It just all seems to happen at once.  But like I said, I'm going to have a good week.  I'm making it happen.

I'm actually hoping this week goes quickly...

So I have a question for some of you.  This is my first race ever, and I don't know what to expect at all.  Anything I should be aware of?  Do?  Not do?  Race etiquette I should observe?   I'd love any and all suggestions, and I'm saying that to all three of you who will read this post.   What should I know before my first race?


  1. Well I’m SURE you already know but it would have been nice to know when I did my first event, don’t drink water the entire time! And then when I did my half tri I discovered that you shouldn't eat a peanut butter and banana sandwich before the race because...well it’s just not pleasant to have come back up! Oh yea and run your ass off in the last leg you will feel AMAZING!

  2. I've never been there, done that. . . but Megan has. She trained her butt off and ran a marathon in San Diego. Maybe she would have some advice for you. . . I wasn't even there to see her - deployed!

  3. Don't start out super fast from the gate. Everyone will be trying to get out plan is to keep to your pace and don't get to anxious out of the gate! Make sure that you drink water and take your fuel the same way you did during your training, ie: fuel at the half way, if you didn't drink water at mile 3 during training don't drink water there during the race. Push yourself the last mile, you will be surprised at how much adrenaline you will have left to get you through the last mile. Hope to see you there!!!

  4. Don't eat or drink anything new the night before or morning of the race. Stick with what you've been using as fuel during your long runs.
    Get there early so you have time to find the start, warm up and stretch a little. Check out the course or study the course map so you have an idea what to expect. Set all your race gear (clothes, shoes, bib number, snacks/water, whatever you'll need) out the night before.
    For race etiquette, don't line up near the front unless you're going to be super speedy. Generally walkers and slower runners should stay to the right so faster runners can pass on the left (think like a highway). If you run with an iPod or whatever (which many races don't allow anymore), I'd recommend just wearing one earbud so you can stay aware of what's going on.

    And above all, relax and try to have fun! Think of all the hard work you've done to prepare yourself. Races are so much fun, you'll find yourself feeding off the energy of the other runners and spectators. Don't be afraid to talk to people at the start, tell them it's your first race--you'll probably find lots of encouragement and support! Good luck!

  5. Good luck with your upcoming race!
    I hope the blister is long gone by then. You might also try Bodyglide on your feet, I used to get blisters as well but that took care of it.
    As for racing, I think the important stuff has already been covered.
    Don't go out too fast or you'll suffer later.
    Line up according to the pace you plan to run so you're not weaving around slower runners or being flattened by faster ones.
    Relax and enjoy!

  6. Don't drink coffee. The last time I drank coffee and exercised I sprinted from the treadmill to the bathroom. I considered the sprint a better workout than the treadmill and thus left the gym.

    Seriously. I don't run. I have very no good advice, except to say GOOD LUCK and god speed! I hope your foot gets better and the polyester socks do the trick. And to think, I thought polyester went out in 1979?