Friday, June 24, 2016

Race Day Essentials

Let's be real, race day can be a stressful time. One way to relieve some of the pressure is by making sure you have the proper race day essentials. Whether you are traveling across the country for a racecation or down the street for a local race, having a list and checking it twice to make sure you have all of your necessities can be the difference between a successful morning and a stressful morning.

Everyone is different when it comes to what they need or desire on race day, but I thought I'd share what I have found useful when getting ready for a race. For me, having a game plan helps to keep the pre-race jitters to a minimum. 

So, let's get into it (PS I thought I'd make it a Q&A so you could copy and paste it into your own post if you wanted.)

Question: What are your top three items that must accompany you to every race?

Answer: My Garmin (totally Type A personality here and MUST know my numbers), my PRO Compression gear (I make sure to pack compression socks for both racing and recovery) and LOTS OF SPARKLE (including one of my many Sparkle Athletic skirts and a Sparkly Soul headband or two).

Q: Do you lay our your #FlatRunner before the race?

A: Every single race (and even for some training runs)! Not only do I love sharing my #FlatRunner on social media (that way fellow runners know what to look for on the course so we can say 'HI'), but it helps me go through a mental checklist to make sure I have everything I may possibly need.

I chuckled the other day because I was looking back through my recent #FlatCarlee's and they are all pretty much the same... I guess when you find what works you stick with it ;)

Q: We often hear, "nothing new on race day". Is this a motto you subscribe to?

A: I've gotta be honest, if it is similar to something I have used before (i.e. an aqua Sparkle Athletic skirt instead of a gunmetal one), then I normally won't think twice about it, but I do try my best to make sure I've trained with the item before it makes my race day cut.

Q: Do you bring your own fuel on race day or rely on the course to provide it?

A: I have a pretty sensitive stomach, so I make sure to train with the same fuel I am planning to use on race day. Currently I am loving PROBAR BOLT chews (the strawberry flavor is my jam). As far as hydration, it really depends on the distance and the weather. I have been known to carry a Nathan handheld so I can drink between the race offered aid stations. And I am never one to turn down free candy (or ice cold orange slices) from strangers on a race course!

Q: Are there any tips you have acquired along the way that you'd like to share?

A: Always overpack. I'd much rather be over-prepared than underprepared. That means I bring my own safety pins to attach my race bib just in case the race doesn't provide them and will have multiple throw-away layers with me. I also suggest that if you are flying to your race to ALWAYS pack your race gear in your carry-on.

Eagle Creek has some AWESOME packing options (specifically from the Pack It Sport™ line). I can throw all of my race day gear in the Fitness Locker conveniently inside my carry-on luggage so I know where everything is. The Roll Top Sac comes in handy once my gear is soggy and sweaty, keeping the stench away from the rest of my clean clothes and containing the funk.

What are some of your race day essentials?

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