The Brighton Half is less than five days away, and these last few days can be just as vital in your preparation as the weeks you have put in to your training.
Ensuring you drink enough water does not mean waking up on Sunday morning and glugging back two litres. Ensure you are drinking plenty of water every day (2 litres) to ensure you are ready for race day.
Being hydrated ensures your muscles and cells are working well, you are focused and nutrients are properly transported around the body.
Don’t over do it
It can be tempting to think you need to fit one more long distance run, or that you need to beast yourself just to make sure you’ve got ‘your race legs.’ This is the worst thing you can do.
Tapering, in other words relaxing your fitness routine in the run up to a race is imperative. This ensures your muscles have sufficient glycogen stores and your legs are rested in time for the race.
How much to taper is a source of great contention with many different theories depending on race distance, how you train and many other variables.
What it is safe to say for a half marathon is don’t put in a long distance in the last week. It is not needed. What can be beneficial to keep the muscles supple and firing is a reduced pace session. But listen to your body. If it feels tired, yoga, swimming or gentle running will suffice.
For a half marathon you don’t need to carb load. But you do need to ensure you are eating well. Don’t spend the week eating lettuce leaves and cottage cheese and then loading up a plate with pasta on Saturday night. Eat a good mix of low GI carbohydrates with some protein throughout the week.
Most important of all, no razzle dazzle in the week before a race. Sleep is the most important and underrated element of all. Get your necessary shut-eye so that your muscles are fully recovered, repaired and ready to race.
As for the morning itself, what are your vital tips for getting race ready?