Last Minute Tips to Help You Finish Your 5K, Half-Marathon, Marathon Strong
Okay...you've spent months preparing to run your race - be it a 5K, half-maration, a full marathon. Whether you're a first-timer or a veteran athlete, follow these tips to be ready to cross the finish line without injury!
Clothing and Apparel
- Shoes should fit properly and offer adequate cushioning and support. Don't wear a new pair of shoes on race day.
- Socks and clothing should be made of synthetic materials that wick away moisture from your skin.
- If it's cold, add a second light layer that can be tied around your waist later.
- If it's sunny, wear a visor or sunglasses - and don't forget sunscreen.
- Use skin lube or a form of lubricant on your skin to prevent chaffing from your sport bra and between thighs to cut down on friction.
- Avoid sport bras or other clothing that have a zipper or clasp to decrease friction at point of contact with the skin.
- Bring dry clothes to change into after the race.
Nutrition and Hydration
- Eat a high-carbohydrate, low-fat meal the night before the race. Rice, pastas, whole grains, fruits and vegetables are good choices.
- Eat breakfast three to four hours before the event.
- Eat one or two carbohydrate gels during the race.
- Drink about 20 ounces of fluid two hours before the race begins.
- Alternate between water and electrolyte beverages while on the course.
Mental and Physical Preparation
- Practice using a positive mental attitude. Think of positive aspects of the race.
- Resist the urge to go all out. Do not try to run faster than your usual pace at the start of the race. You may use up energy that you will need closer to the finish line.
- When things get tough, visualize yourself crossing the finish line.
After the Race
- Immediately begin drinking fluids to replace weight lost through perspiration.
- A post-race meal should be high in carbohydrates, moderate in protein and low in fat.
- Do not be afraid to seek medical attention if needed.
- If available, take advantage of free injury checks after the race.
Franciscan Health is proud to host and/or sponsor a number of run/walk races in our communities. Find an upcoming event near you!