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The final countdown to race day
March 1, 2017 // Rachel Ellis
As race day is almost upon us we can feel the excitement and the nerves building amongst our runners – thank you so much to our Bath Half community on Facebook and Twitter who take the time to get in touch – we love hearing from you.
For all of our runners, the hard work is now done. Take a moment this week to think about all those miles you’ve covered in your preparation for race day – and be proud! Whether your training has gone brilliantly, or not quite as you planned, you have covered so many more miles than you would have done if you’d stayed at home on the sofa this winter!
So while you wait for the big day, what should you being doing?
Take it Easy
The main thing to do is significantly reduce your mileage and just do one mini interval session this week. It’s also good to go for a very short 1-3 mile run the day before the race to help get your body race ready. If you haven’t managed to get as much training done has you had hoped, now is not the time to start cramming it in. This wont help you on race day. If you still haven’t run 8 comfortable miles in your training then please consider a run/walk strategy for race day. This is as simple as running at a comfortable pace and when it becomes uncomfortable, just walk for a little while. We’d rather you finish with a smile than go hard at the beginning of the race and then not be able to finish. We’ll be waiting for you with an enormous cheer and a medal at the finish line, whether you are walking or running as you cross it!
While you’re doing less running this week it’s a good idea to do some stretching each day. This will help keep your muscles as flexible as possible for the big day.
Dig out an old jumper or hoodie, or buy one from a charity shop
Despite the odd sunny day here and there, we are still getting some pretty chilly weather. We ask all runners to begin moving into their start pens at 10am on race morning as it takes us a fair bit of time to get you all assembled. Wearing something warm, which you are happy to discard as your cross the start line, will help get you off to a better start – nobody wants to start running when they’re freezing cold! Just throw your jumper to the side of the road and one of our race charities will be on hand to collect them all up. Please dont wear a bin bag – they will just end up in landfill and we have had a few cases of runners slipping and tripping on them and getting injured.
Make a travel plan now
Take the stress our of your race day morning by making your travel plans now. Read the travel information page on our website and check the times of trains and buses with your travel provider, in case of any last minute changes.
Race numbers and timing chips
Please check that your race number matches the number on the front of the envelope and timing chip. If not please contact the event office via or online contact form or call 01225 422255. The IPICO timing chip that you have received records your race time – if you don’t wear it you won’t be recorded in the results. Tie the chip onto one shoe using the tags provided – see the diagram provided with it. Do not wear or carry your chip anywhere else or it may not work.
Think about your race day kit
Nobody wants to be in a panic about what to wear on race morning. Pack your kit the day before. The weather can be so unpredictable so make sure that you have the running kit to reflect that. Also make sure you think about your post race clothing. Pack a change of warm clothes including a nice brand new pair of socks (heaven) and remember to pack yourself a couple of post race treats containing lots of protein to help your body recover. It’s good to eat within 20 minutes of finishing. If you want to leave your kit in our baggage tent while you run then please tear off the detachable tag at the bottom of your race number and thread through the end handle of your bag.
Don’t drink too much
Make sure you’re properly hydrated in the days running up to race day. When you’re well hydrated your wee should be a pale straw colour. Dont do things differently on race day to what you’ve done in training. Most runners drink far too much fluid on race days. Drinking too much just means you’ll need to spend a lot of time in the queues for the loo before the race – or worse still you’ll have to keep stopping to use the loo during the race. Mild dehydration is perfectly natural after running, and won’t effect your performance at all, especially for a half marathon in March. Drinking too much, however, can be dangerous
Believe you can do it!
One of the most important pieces of advice that we can give you is to always begin a run believing you can do it. Think about those last few meters of the race – running up Great Pulteney Street and crossing the finish line. The crowd will certainly make you feel amazing at this point, even though your body will no doubt be feeling a little less than amazing! Have a post race treat in mind; a nice long bubble bath, with a glass of something fizzy, a delicious Sunday lunch with friends and family – or just the thought of adding another shiny medal to your collection when you get home. Focus on it and you will get to the end!