Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Taper Time Tips

With my fall "goal" race, the Ventura Marathon, less than two weeks away, I thought now would be the perfect time to try and distract myself from 'stressing the frick out' by sharing some of my tips on how to keep the taper crazies away.

PS Even if you aren't currently tapering for a race, you can totally bookmark this post for when you need it in the future. We can always use suggestions on ways to potentially fill our new found free-time during our taper... instead of freaking out about the upcoming race of course ;) (because I'm sure you don't need tips on that - you're probably a professional, just like I am). {Feel free to read all about tapering in this Runner's World article (why it's helpful, how to do it, etc).}

Source: Left / Middle / Right

Weather Stalking

Okay, so I know stressing about the weather does very little (seeing as Mother Nature is a beast that has very little regard for anyone else), but I still make sure to do my fair share of weather watching so I know how to plan for the race [i.e. do I need to bring extra hydration / should I pack a rain jacket or duct tape to help "weatherproof" my shoes / etc].


Updating Music Playlists

For those of you who listen to music, make sure to have your jams locked and loaded. Some of you may want to rock the same tunes you used during training (that way when you hear those familiar songs your body 'knows' what to do) while others of you may want to update your playlist to contain a few extra motivational songs and anthem cries.

Foam Roll & Stretch

I do my darnedest to foam roll and stretch every evening (although there are some nights where I am just too tired and decide crawling into bed sounds much better), but when it comes to the week before a race you better believe that I am setting aside a chunk of time to roll it out (whether it be your IT band, your quads, your calves, your feet, etc). DO IT!

Just a few of my favorite "torture" devices

Review The Course

Knowing the course can have HUGE advantages (when to expect hills, where to be on the look out for aid stations, etc). Although I am one who tends to forget to do much studying of the course map or elevation charts, I know how beneficial they can be... so learn from my dumb tax mistakes and do your homework! You can never be too prepared.



No matter the weather, it is always important to hydrate prior to a race (starting a race dehydrated might be just as bad or worse than starting a race without having adequately trained for it). And hydrating shouldn't start the morning or even day before - make sure you give your body the nutrition and hydration it needs leading up to toeing the starting line!

Yes, size DOES matter! I carry around a 40 ounce reusable bottle
with me 95% of the time so I have a portable hydration station ;) 

Charge Electronics

Who wants to show up on race morning with their gadgets and gizmos dead? Uh NO ONE! So while you have some extra time, make sure to grab the power cords and give your electronics {and spare external batteries} some extra juice. This reminds me, if you are traveling to the race, make sure the chargers find their way into your bags.

Decide On Race Outfit

I swear, sometimes deciding on my race day outfit is one of the hardest parts (okay, the mileage is definitely the hardest part, but picking my outfit may come in a close second). Now that you've versed yourself in what the weather will be like on race morning, get your gear ready. (I love taking #FlatRunner photos. Not only does it help your friends know what to look for when they are spectating, but it also helps you make sure you don't forget any last minute essentials.)

The hubby's favorite "flat" runner... It got a lot of chuckles that's for sure!
Source: @ruggedwoodsman's IG account

Max & Relax

You put in the work, now take a couple deep breaths, trust your training and RELAX! Whether that means taking a couple hours and reading one of your favorite running (or non-running) books, soaking in an Epsom salt bath to relax the muscles, vegging out on the couch to your favorite reality TV show, napping with your favorite four-legged friend, etc., just make sure you take time for YOU! You earned it after all those early mornings, hard workouts and long runs! Your body is physically prepared, now make sure you show up rested and mentally prepared to ROCK your race!

And what better way to max and relax than to head to Kauai for a 9 day vacation?! Yup, we are heading to the airport this afternoon and "leaving on a jet plane" for the next week and a half. Hopefully all the sun, snorkeling, shaved ice and aloha will put me in the right state of mind to CRUSH the upcoming race. With that being said, I hope you don't mind but I will be "off the grid" for the next few days. I'll share our adventures on Instagram, but probably won't post on here till we're home.

What do you do during your taper time to keep the crazies away?

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