Tomorrow is the Ogden Marathon! This is the big hometown race for me and my fourth year participating. This race holds a special place in my heart because it was where I caught the “running bug”, where I passed out, and where I eventually conquered in the full with a PR of 3:50.
I will be running in the relay this year and will be doing the 2nd leg which is about 6 miles in the beautiful valley. I’m so excited!
Each time I have participated in a race, I have learned something new. Even the smallest of tips can make a race day better. I look back on my beginning races and laugh at myself for some of the things I did. So I thought I would share a few “race day tips” from my own experience.
1. Wear something you know you are comfortable with.
I love getting my outfit ready for a race and I love looking girly with skirts and ribbons, but the first marathon I did I was to worried about my cute skirt. I just saw it at a store a few days before the race and knew I had to have it. It did look darling, but during the race it kept riding up my inner thighs. This might be due to the fact that my inner thighs do not have a generous space between them so the friction is bound to push things up! I had to keep pulling the shorts underneath down and rub vaseline between my legs, but even still I could feel the chafing coming on. I also had a cute headband that I eventually tore out of my hair because it kept bugging me.
So make sure you have run in the clothes you are going to run in race day. Make sure you are used to the accessories like hair items, or ipod carriers, or water carriers. Don’t try it the day of the race.
P.S. this was the skirt that I wore when I passed out and yelled to the EMT “I have to finish this race, don’t you see my cute skirt!”
2. Don’t try new food on race day or overdo the eating.
The term “Carb Loading” always seems to come to mind when eating for a race. Many people think you should eat a TON of pasta the night before and the morning of. This is actually not the time to do that. Yes, you do need to carb load according to the race you are running, but there is a science to it. For smaller races like a 5k, you don’t need to worry about it. You will have enough energy with regular eating and a small bite before the race. The longer distances is when it really counts. Check out this article for more specific information.
My mistake was that the first race I ran was the relay and it was five miles long. I thought I would need to carb load or else I wouldn’t make it. The morning of the race I had two huge bowls of Kashi cereal.
This cereal is yummy, but it has a ton of fiber and fiber mixed with racing does not treat you kindly. I will just leave the rest to your imagination, but let’s just say I’m glad I had plenty of time before I had to start running!
3. DOUBLE KNOT YOUR SHOES!!
This may seem like a no-brainer because I have heard this tip many times, but guess who didn’t follow it?? Yes, that’s right ME! I was so excited/nervous to start my last marathon I didn’t even think to look down at my shoes. I was with my pacing group and trying to stay glued at the hip to my pacer. When we started running and I heard a little clicking sound I was so mad at myself when I realized it was MY untied laces. I had to jump off the side right at the beginning and hurry and tie them. Then it took some energy to get caught back up to my pacer. That energy loss is huge when you are running a full marathon. Every bit counts and I had just wasted it on my dang LACES!!
4. Practice eating and carrying your race fuel.
Races will offer a fuel during the race for you. Make sure you have had it before while running or it may reek havoc on your stomach. I always carry my own fuel because I know what works for me. My mistake with this tip was that I had safety pinned the fuel to my water belt and as I ran it ripped the GU open. Just as I passed the half way point I realized I had GU running down my shorts and leg. I had also lost two of my GU’s somewhere. I sort of freaked out because I had planned exactly when I would be eating them and now they were gone and one of them was running down my leg. So I did what any sensible person would and started scooping it off my leg and sucking it off my fingers…kinda gross but I was desperate!
5. Make sure your bib is ready to go.
I ran a 30k and just had all of my stuff in a bag and was going to put my bib on right before. I had assumed there were safety pins with it, but there wasn’t and they were out at the registration desk. I wasn’t sure what to do, but since I am a teacher of course I was able to find a STAPLER in my purse. haha I began to staple my race bib to my shirt and my friends started laughing hysterically and said “What are you doing?” Well, I didn’t know what else to do so it was the next best thing.
Just so you know… staples DO NOT hold a bib on and we were able to finally scrounge up a few pins from other people.
6. Drink up!
It is so important to be hydrated for a race. You need to be drinking enough water the whole week before you race and you shouldn’t be skipping out on drink stations. Drink early and often and before you feel thirsty. I personally like to carry my own water with a water belt, but some people don’t so do what works for you. I have had runs where I didn’t take water and I definitely felt my energy levels drop.
7. Set your stuff out the night before in a SAFE place.
I had my stuff all ready to go and layed out for me. I was getting into bed nice and early when I heard Brock coming down the hallway and there was a nice crunching sound. He had just stepped on my sunglasses and broke them. AAAAHHHH! It was totally MY fault for laying my stuff out in the middle of the hallway, but Brock was kind enough to run the store to get some glasses that would at least work for race day.
8. Be happy with YOUR own race.
Everyone has different running goals and different paces. Sometimes when you are in a race, that competitive feeling comes up. That can be great if it keeps you going, but not so good if it makes you feel unsatisfied with your best effort. Make sure you are being realistic about your racing goals. My first half marathon I just thought it would be easy to come in under two hours, when I finished over two hours I knew that was my best effort that day and I should feel happy about it. I had given my all and that was good enough for that day.
These are just a few of my own personal race day tips. If you would like to read up on some more, check out these articles. Good luck if your running in the Ogden Marathon tomorrow, or at your next race!
What are your race day tips??
Have you made any running mistakes you’ve learned from?
I took a little break from the blog because I am enjoying spending my days doing a lot of cuddling with this cute boy. Also, during his naps I couldn’t keep ignoring the household chores that have been calling my name. I sort of loathe putting my laundry away but it needed to be done. Anyone else??
I am seriously considering the baby carrier my new form of strength training. He is in this at least once a day so I can get something done and he is no featherweight. I got on the scale with him and he is a whopping 14 pounds of deliciousness!
So when I go on my walks/runs with him I’ve got to be pushing at least 20 extra pounds. I live around a lot of hills so this is a major leg burner.
Since most of my workouts lately have been with the little guy, I decided I needed a run- by myself and outside! I told Brock he was on baby duty ASAP once he got home so I could go run. When he got home it was still really hot outside so we decided to do plant our cute window boxes first.
We have 16 window boxes that go all around our house. I LOVE them. Brock built and painted them last year. It is my job to water them every day.
Baby Fed? Check.
Yard work done? Check.
Husband knows he is on baby duty?? Check. Check.
I was obviously very excited to have a little evening solo run. Running + taking a cheesy selfie = bad picture quality
In my mind it was going to be so glorious and it would just feel like I was gliding at a speedy pace along the road. (I had kind of envisioned it all day)
It was SO NOT that way.
This run was HARD.
I felt super winded.
I took a lot of walk breaks.
My mind quickly changed from four miles to three.
But I still LOVED it.
When I came home I said “That was really hard!”
That’s just how running is for me. Sometimes it does feel like I’m gliding on clouds, or fast as a cheetah.
Then there are runs like this one when it feels more like I’m a rhino hiking up a mountain.
I’ll just keep working for those fast as cheetah moments because they are definitely worth it!
What’s the hardest workout you have done lately??
How have I lived this long and not known about this awesome app?? I am completely in love with the Nike Training Club app. My friend Rachel showed me this a few weeks ago thank you very much! The best part about it is that it’s FREE. Although, I had to take off the massive amounts of pictures on my phone to have enough space for it to download. I have done a few of the workouts and I can’t believe how many more there are.
You can pick your workout based on what you want to focus on and there are different levels of difficulty.
I really love that most of the workouts are short, so you can do something in 15 minutes and then do another one if you have more time.
There are also workouts from AMAZING athletes.
So for example, today I ran one mile on my trusty treadmill and then did the 15 minute workout by Allyson Felix…AWESOME!
Afterwards, I was still feeling sore from the 5k on Saturday so I knew I needed some good stretches.
So of course I invited the famous Kara Goucher into my home so I could do her favorite stretches.
I also had to try Paula Radcliffe’s workout the other day and it was equally awesome.
I pretty much feel like I have a close relationship with these amazing ladies if I can do a workout that they do.
I’m sure this will help me run as fast as they do right? Sub three hour marathon here I come!! –haha very funny
There are A TON of other workouts on this app and it will play with the music on your phone.
It is like having a personal trainer on your phone.
I have a gym membership, but it is going to be hard to go with a new baby so this will be a great go-to for me.
This will be a great traveling tool as well so there is really no excuse to miss a workout when it is right there.
So any other Nike Training Clubbers out there? Or have I just been living in the stone age and was the only one not doing these cool workouts?
If you have done it, what is your favorite thing about it?
If you haven’t you should definitely try it!
Lastly, check out who looks really happy about wearing their first pair of jeans today.
Aaaahhh his cuteness overwhelms me.
My school does a really fun 5k every year that I love participating in. I was planning on doing it this year and on Thursday I thought “Hmmm when is the 5K?” Good thing I double checked because it was today.
Then at three in the morning I decided that I was definitely NOT going since I was going on two hours of sleep and Cole wasn’t showing signs of wanting to go back to sleep and the last thing I wanted to do was wake up early for a race.
The little guy must have known I needed it because he slept afterwards and when I woke up to feed him at seven I felt rested and I figured I could still make the race. So I got my stuff together while feeding the bubs. (that was quite a multi-tasking scene) Then I handed him off to dad and hurried out the door.
I made it just in time to get my bib and get ready.
It was so fun to see all my favorite teachers and students.
This cute student of mine really wanted to run next to me and I’ve realized what I need to do to become a faster runner- run with KIDS! She was a little speed demon and she talked to me the whole time while I was huffing it next to her. There was a big hill right off the bat and she just sprinted right up it with her teacher following behind.
She told me all about the recent art projects they were doing in class and who did it wrong and how she had to fix it for them…so cute! About half way she decided to go find her dad so she could run with him.
Running with her was the highlight of the race!
Marnie, my cute teaching friend was at the last turn to cheer everyone on. Side note- this girl is the queen of wearing the best high heels at work and you will never see her at work without a cute skirt or dress on.
I didn’t take my Garmin because I didn’t want to even worry about my pace. I just wanted to RUN.
It felt AMAZING! It especially felt great to not have a bouncing baby belly, or side ligament pain, or kicking from the little guy.
I definitely like running more not being pregnant.
I blasted this song and it was on repeat for the last half of the race. It was just the right beat to keep me moving.
I was feeling the beat so much, I may have been tempted to do a few shimmies while running (I have definitely done this before) but I refrained since I was there as a teacher haha.
Can you find my name on this list?? I was VERY pleasantly surprised to see I took 2nd place in my age group! Wahoooo!! I was thrilled to see my average pace was 9:14.
They had the cutest prizes for the runners that placed, so I chose a ball to take home for my cute boy at home.
A 5k race is really fun because it’s short and sweet, but still challenging because you know it’s short so you want to go fast. I would love to run more of them.
We had a fun night with family last night and Brock set up our own outdoor movie theatre. It was a bit chilly and everyone needed hot chocolate mid-movie.
Are you celebrating Cinco De Mayo? -I have been eating ridiculous amounts of chips and salsa to celebrate.
Cutest. Sweater. Ever!!! These amazing friends from Germany sent us the cutest package for Cole. She had made this adorable sweater for him and I just can’t get over how stinkin cute it is. The elephant buttons are perfect and my favorite part is the hood with the trunk in the back….aaaahhh I LOVE it! He obviously loves it too. I am amazed by people who can crochet anything. (my grandma tried to teach me once and that was the end of it)
Cole got to meet his adorable cousin Jemma yesterday. When we put them next to each other I just died at how big Cole looks compared to her. Where did the time go? They are only six weeks apart, but he looks huge compared to her. They are going to be the best of friends, although the picture in the corner doesn’t look like they are starting on the right foot. She doesn’t look to thrilled with her wiggly cousin.
The best comment came from my hilarious nephew Zander (Jemma’s big brother).
Zander- “Hey you have a baby and I have baby too, but my baby is cuter than yours.”
We LAUGHED about that all day! Kids are HILARIOUS.
Last night, I introduced Cole to my dearest friend that has been so neglected lately…Hello Dearest Treadmill!! I feel like I need to name her, any ideas?? I figured I was taking a gamble hoping he would just sit quietly while I worked out, but he did great. He just sat and watched me with big eyes and then lulled off to sleep. Maybe this is how I should get him to nap now. It may have also helped that I had my Pandora station blasting.
Workout consisted of:
Running 1 mile
Shoulder presses, bicep curls
Run/Walk another 2 miles.
It felt great to be using the treadmill again.
Can you crochet/knit?
What’s the funniest thing a child last said to you?
It was such beautiful weather the other day I had to get out and take advantage! It was the perfect day to do a little test run and see how I did. I warmed up and then decided to do intervals while pushing the stroller. I would run for two minutes (more like a slow jog but I like to say run ) then I would walk for two minutes. This is a great way to start back into running without overdoing it. I will probably continue do the run/walk model and just decrease my walking intervals each time. I know it will take time to build back my same endurance level I was at before pregnancy.
Even though my run portions were at a slow pace, it felt AMAZING to be moving again. I definitely had a great shot of endorphins.
Ah endorphins… this reminds me of my favorite Legally Blonde quote.
-Elle: “I just don’t think that Brooke could’ve done this. Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands, they just don’t!”
On a small side note, when my friends and I first watched this movie, we were determined to have our hair curled and nails done every day to be just like Elle Woods hahaha- that was short lived!!!
I ended up doing 3.05 miles altogether.
The little guy slept like through the entire thing.
Here is an example of how when you exercise, you are rewarded. I stopped by to say hi to a neighbor on my way back and she gave me the most delicious homemade bread and jam. You know I went right home and ate it. I really do have wonderful neighbors!
Last bit of randomness- Whoever said that men can’t multi-task?? Cole loves to be held 24/7 so when I’m busy, Brock is in charge. He has gotten creative lately.
Have a great Wednesday! Cole gets to go meet his cute cousin today.
What is one of your favorite movies that you have watched over and over?
-Mine are Mean Girls, Legally Blonde, Little Women, and Ever After.