Race Day Tips – from our Bath Half runners

February 29, 2016 // Rachel Ellis

Race Day Tips – from our Bath Half runners

Are you doing the Bath Half for the first time? We recently asked our Facebook and Twitter crowd who’ve run the Bath Half before to give us their top tips.

So here they are –we’ve included some from previous years too – we hope you find them useful.

Thank you to everyone who contributed.


Before the race

“Have your name printed on the front of your running shirt. It’s great to have the crowd call your name, cheering you on when you’re running!”

“Get there in plenty of time so you can relax before the start.”

“Wear an old pair of trainers until ready to race. It can be muddy before the start!”

“Have an old jumper to wear to the start line which you can throw off afterwards – waiting around can get chilly!” [No bin bags please – they can cause runners to slip and trip.]

“It’s a good idea to have an old jumper at the start which you can throw to the side (it gets collected) to keep you warm while you wait for gun!”

“It can be chilly so wear something that you don’t mind ditching at the start.” [We collect discarded clothes for charity]

“Make sure you follow the instructions carefully to secure your timing chip on your trainer. I didn’t and mine fell off, posted a ‘Did Not Start’!!”

“Boys – make sure you wear a quality t-shirt or else you will have very sore nipples.”

“Agree cheering and meeting points in advance with your friends and family so you can look out for them, because it will be very crowded.”

“The toilets are all very busy just before the start of the run and doing a Radcliffe is not acceptable, even for the lads!”

“Try out the sports drinks that will be on offer in advance while you’re training to make sure you’re ok with them.”

“Try things in training first – don’t eat or drink anything on race day that you don’t normally have when you’re planning a long run.”

“Take a little bit of loo roll with you – just in case!”

“Take a few jelly babies with you to see you through the last few miles.”


At the start

“Don’t go off too fast – unless you actually enjoy your lungs and legs burning later on”

“Don’t go off all crazy fast with the herd.”

“At the gun don’t go out too fast. Take an extra 30 seconds for the first mile. “

“If you are in the ‘also rans’ like me, just go with the flow for the first bit of the race, don’t waste energy trying to overtake people, there is plenty of time for that along the Lower Bristol Road!”

“Remember it’s downhill at the start so be careful not to go off to fast– and remember you have to go back up it at the end!”

“It’s really crowded at the start so use it as an excuse to start slowly don’t waste energy weaving & ducking the crowd soon thins .”


During the race

“Find a group running at your pace and join them. They will keep you going without you pushing too hard or beyond your ability.”

“Don’t run across other runners path to greet spectators, if you need to, look beforehand.”

“There is water and Lucozade on offer as you go round but don’t drink tonnes of it – drink as much as you normally in training. Drinking too much can be very dangerous.”

“Don’t wear headphones. The crowd are really supportive and there’s a fantastic feel during the race. Don’t miss out!”

“Don’t try to overtake people at the start / save your energy for later in the race – it becomes much less crowded once you leave Pulteney Street anyway.”

“If you wear headphones be aware of people around you- don’t drift & trip others up!! Best not to wear & soak up atmosphere!! [the race organisers ask that runners dont’ wear headphones – and if you absolutely have to then please – just one earpiece only. Read our headphones policy here in our race day FAQ]

“Hydration is important – don’t get tempted to over drink because it sloshes around in your tum; on the other hand most people will need to take on some fluid during the race. Best thing is to not change from whatever rehydration regime has worked for you during training – even if you find it hard to ignore the free drinks on the way round ;-)”

“Always run at your own pace – don’t try and compete with anyone around you.”

“Try and maintain the pace you’re comfortable with, don’t worry about other runners overtaking you at the start, and if this is your first big run, just try and enjoy it as much as you can. The crowds will help to spur you on when it gets tough!”

“Try to relax and enjoy the crowd, and the runners around you  – watch your speed as you’ll probably run faster because of the adrenaline.”

“There’s loads of support all the way round – even if you walk a bit, finishing is really fantastic – Good Luck!”

“Rather than be disheartened when the elites lap you on the first loop, admire them and cheer them on.”

“Don’t forget to enjoy it and smile!!”

“Try a smile as you’re coming down the home straight – it will feel great!”

“Love the Heart FM stage at Churchill Bridge and the steel band in Queen Square – they really motivate you!”


After the race

“Don’t forget to stretch afterwards – it’s so easy to forget in the excitement of finishing.”

“Allow extra time to get out of Bath afterwards and check the race Twitter feed for updates on traffic.”


See you on race day everyone!