If you’re not much of a runner but are determined to develop this interest by participating in a long race, there’s a lot of preparation that you’ll have to undergo to be ready for this experience. Luckily, with the right planning and preparation, you can help your mind and body be ready for everything that comes along with a long-distance run.
To help you in doing this, here are three tips for preparing to run your first long race.
Make A Plan For Refueling
For shorter runs, you don’t have to worry so much about refueling while you’re running. But on long races, you’ll need to add fuel to your body along the way so that you have energy to finish what you started.
To get your run off on the right foot, it’s vital that you are properly hydrated before you even start the race. And to keep your hydration levels where they should be, make a plan for how you’ll hydrate along the way. At many organized races, there will be people or businesses giving out water and other chilled liquids to runners. But you can’t depend on this for your race, you should either bring water along with you or have someone with water stationed at a certain point. You should also plan to eat something with carbohydrates and protein about every hour or so into your run.
Break In Your Gear
In your excitement for running your first long race, you might want to buy new shoes and other gear to wear. And while newer gear can make use of the latest technology to help make your run more comfortable, if you haven’t taken the time to break in your gear before your race, you could be in for a world of hurt.
Knowing this, it’s best to use older gear that you’ve been running in for weeks or months so that you know that your body will be comfortable. Switching up even the smallest of things on the day of your race could backfire, so it’s best to avoid this.
Practice Pacing Yourself
For your training runs, it might have been hard to find the excitement and motivation to get you running. But on the day of a race, you might feel adrenaline at the start of the race that you’ve never experienced with other runs. When this happens, it can be easy to let these feelings take over and cause you to run faster than you should at the beginning.
To keep this from happening to you, you’ll want to work hard to keep your pacing consistent to how you’ve always run in the past. By doing this, you’ll keep yourself from burning out too quickly on your race and give yourself the best chance of finishing with a great personal time.
If you’ve got your first big running race coming up soon, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you get yourself ready for this event.