So it might not be race week for everyone reading this, but races are coming just around the corner! I find myself in the middle of my own race week, as I prepare for my first race of the season at Gorge Waterfalls 100km this weekend. For me, early season races are a chance to dust off the rust from that cold, winter training and use them as a build to my ‘A’ races come summer. But it’s still a race! A long way to travel on foot and there are a lot of things to plan for come race day. Here’s what I run through my head the week of a race, as I run a bit less and plan a bit more.
Keep Your Training in Check
No matter what the past few months have looked like, the best thing to do during race week is to relax a bit more and not cram in more training. Trust your body that it’s ready, and if it’s not, reanalyze your goals going into the race. Ask yourself (and your coach) what the point of the race is and develop a plan to execute it. Not all races are ‘A’ races so adjust expectations accordingly. Gorge 100km is a build race for me – a chance to run far for the first time this year. So my goal is to run a smart race, practice fueling and remember how to suffer again!
Race Day Nutrition
Hopefully you practiced this during your training! I like to look at the course map to see where the aid stations are and plan my fuel accordingly. This will determine how much water and how many gels I bring with me from the start and how many I need to give my crew a key aid stations along the way. I like to have labeled baggies with all my essentials in them so there is no confusion on what I need to bring with me. I calculate my nutrition needs based on consuming about 200 cal/hour. I used NeverSecond gels and drink mix from The Feed in my HydraPak flasks to get everything in I need. If it’s an extra hot day, don’t be afraid of salt cravings or adding in extra electrolytes!
Race Day Kit
Of course you have to check the weather for race day, but be prepared!! If you races is a long one, have extra layers to change into if the temperature drops! A lightweight, packable jacket is always a good thing to carry with you for those moments where you might get cold. Make sure your feet are comfortable too! I’ll be racing in my Brooks Calderas for Gorge 100km, and with all the waterfalls, I’ll be sure to put on some Squirrels Nut Butter on my feet to prevent blisters. A headlamp, my Coros watch, a good attitude and my Julbo Reactiv lenses are also essentials to my race kit.
Pre and Post Race Routine
Whatever your routine is on a daily basis, I would stick to that race day! Mine usually involves, coffee, music, and some stretching with some torture devices (pictured below ⬇️ ). I also have my post race recovery drink ready and waiting for me when I cross the finish line. My favorite is the Total Recovery Protein Powder by Swiss RX. You can find it on The Feed.
My Race Calendar
- Gorge Waterfalls 100km | April 2nd | Oregon, USA 🏃♀️
- Unbound Gravel 200 | June 4th | Kansas, USA 🚴♀️
- San Juan Solstice 50M | June 25th | Colorado, USA 🏃♀️
- BigHorn Gravel | June 26th | Colorado, USA 🚴♀️
- UTMB | August 26th | Chamonix, France 🏃♀️
- Big Sugar Gravel | October 22nd | Arkansas, USA 🚴♀️
- Puerto Vallarta Mexico by UTMB 50km | October 29th | Puerto Vallarta, Mexico 🏃♀️