March 10, 2014

MIMM-Going into a Race Unprepared

I'm linking up with Marvelous in my Monday today even though my weekend was less than marvelous. 

I had a fabulous Thursday night out at Baltimore's Cosmic Cocktail party and had various libations and bites to eat from local restaurants.It was nice to get dressed up and have a great night out in the city!  
cocktailparty1

Friday night after getting back from Crossfit, I started to feel really tired and awful so I called it an early night.

Saturday the weather was BEAUTIFUL with temperatures near 60 degrees and the sun shining. I tried to go on my longer run alone in the afternoon to enjoy the weather after loading up on some medicine. I scaled back and wanted to try to do 8 slow miles instead of the 10-11 I should have been running. Unfortunately I only made it 6.5 miles before I felt like complete crap and got home. After a long hot shower and some time with the couch and Netflix, I took my temperature, and it turns out I had a low grade fever. No bueno. So needless to say, the rest of the weekend I took it really easy and drank lots of fluids a.k.a lots of tea and lemonade flavored Mio in my water.  The boyfriend also brought me home a chocolate bacon doughnut which made me feel a little better :)
Maple-Bacon-Donut
Bacon is good on everything. 
Sunday night I did have some yummy pizza that was loaded with veggies. Seriously this is just a pile of delicious roasted vegetables pretending to be pizza, and I don't mind. 
Veggie-Pizza

So I'm feeling pretty discouraged that I could not get a last good long run in since I'm feeling not so good about the DC Rock and Roll Half Marathon on Saturday. I'm just glad that what I have is probably just a cold or virus and not the flu, and that I have a week to feel better. 

So here's what to do when you're unprepared for a race, which is not recommended, but may happen. (Note: I am not a personal trainer or certified in any way, these tips are all from personal experience. Please discuss plans with a health professional before running a race you may not be prepared for!)

Tips-For-being-Unprepared-for-a-race

1. Make your race goals realistic.
This isn't my spring half marathon to PR so already expectations were lower, which is good. At this point, I'm trying to make it better than my "worst" half marathon, which sadly for me, was sub-2 hour and not bad at all (and my first half marathon).  If you are under-prepared for a race, accept that you probably won't set a new personal record , and it might hurt a little. Set realistic goals based on the training you have done and the shape you are in. You don't want to get in the middle of the race and get burned out or injured.  As always, start the race out slow!

girls-running-hate
Change race goals so you don't feel like this a 1/3 of the way through. (gif from here
2. Hydrate and roll out.
Foam roll out that is. I plan on stretching, foam rolling and making sure my legs are feeling good for race day. Also I ALWAYS notice how crappy I feel for any run or workout when I'm dehydrated, so drinking extra water is just good advice for fitness in general and especially before races.  I'll be trying to drink my All Day Nuun in the mornings before my coffee/tea and be mindful to drink more water throughout the week. This is extra important since I'm still feeling under the weather too!
Nuun1
Disclaimer: I'm a Nuun ambassador and receive a discount on Nuun products, but have been a huge fan WAY before that. I really freaking love and use their products!


3. Get a couple more good runs in. 
I wasn't planning on really tapering much for this run since I haven't been running a ton. Hopefully when I'm feeling 100% better I'll get a solid 6 mile run in (approximately half the distance of my race distance) during the middle of the week to see how my body and pace is feeling.  If I feel good, it'll be a nice confidence booster and will help me figure out how I should be pacing myself. Obviously if I felt I was completely out of shape or could get injured, I would NOT still be running it. 
You've got this!
liz-lemon-high-five
4. Be prepared for race day.
I'm a super organized person and while I can go with the flow, being late and chaotic makes me really stressed out.  If I can have all my travel plans ready and race gear picked out and packed,I'll feel much better. Stress only makes everything worse.
baltimore-marathon-2013-gear
All my gear laid out pre-Baltimore Marathon 2013

4. Run happy. 
I freaking love this motto (which also happens to be the Brooks Running tagline).  Hopefully by race day I'm feeling better and will be able to line up at the start line feeling relaxed and ready to have an enjoyable run. I want to enjoy the course, be smiling, and just run. There really isn't much more I can do right now to get ready for the race-pushing yourself the week before will only hurt you more! And hey, you never know what can happen in a race! 

run-happy-selfie
I hope to be feeling like this on race day!

Also go check out this awesome coffee talk post with the I'm Fit Possible community today!

Have you ever felt really unprepared for a race? How was your weekend?

23 comments:

  1. Hope you're feeling better chickie!! Love the point about setting realistic expectations, a Personal Best is just that; the best you have ever done, and not necessarily something you can expect to achieve every time (note to self).

    Have fun this weekend!

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    1. Thanks for the well wishes. It's hard to accept that you aren't going to PR every race!

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  2. that pizza looks amazing! ...let's be serious, so does the donut - and they balance each other out, really.

    hope you kick this thing soon. can't wait to read about how you killed your race ;)

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    1. Exactly-I'm all about balance :) Thanks so much for your support, as always!

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  3. Ah, donut soulmates! What a cutie pie pic of you and the bf (yes?) in the top photo.

    I have never done a race, but I'm sure the fun and enthusiasm of R&R marathons will make it a great one for you this weekend!!

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    1. Yay for donut soulmates :) Yes it's the bf-I suppose I should have captioned that one! Thanks I'm hoping all the excitement will help!

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  4. Hope you get over that cold entirely before your race! Good luck in it, Rock and Roll race series races are always a blast!
    Great tips too! I've never felt totally unprepared in a race, but things happen that raise a few doubts which can make a person feel less prepared. They way I look at it, good training is the key and everything else will fall into place, well as long as you don't forget the running shoes, lol..

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    1. Thanks for the well wishes! I'll try not to forget my running shoes :)

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  5. Really like your tip "Run Happy" because it seems to me if you are going to run long distances being happy is a must! I don't run however I do cycle long distances and Happy is a big part of each ride! Thanks for sharing Best Regards, Wendy http://wendybottrell.com

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    1. Thanks-run happy AND ride happy :)

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  6. Hope you're feeling better Lauren!!! And I hope your race gives you unexpected results!!! :-)

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    1. Thanks so much-I'm hoping for a fun race!

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  7. I hope you feel better! I've had that totally unprepared feeling for my last 25K and it is hard! I like your "Run Happy" because that really can make all the difference in how your run goes. The RnR DC course looks like so much fun. I hope you have a great race!

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    1. Thanks so much. I'm glad the course looks fun and the weather looks okay.

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  8. I really think you're going to surprise yourself with this race, but if not, there are plentyyyyy of others this spring :) Bummed we didn't get to hang out but when you're sick, there's nothing worse than forcing yourself to get up and out of the house. I hope you're starting to feel better today!

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    1. Thanks for the vote of confidence. At least we'll hang out Wednesday morning! I'm starting to feel better, thank goodness!

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  9. Sending you many get well wishes & keeping you in my prayers. Let's hope your able to kick this little bug's butt before race day.

    As delicious as the pizza looks - I'm all about that donut. Your man did good & obv. knows the way to a womans heart LOL

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    1. Thank you so much. The donut was great-I'm glad he knew sweets would make me happy :)

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  10. Hope you start feeling better. I'm going to use all your tips for my half on the 30th. I injured myself at the beginning of Feb. and this past Sat. was my first long run without pain. It was bad, but I did it. Good luck with the rest of your training!

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  11. Great advice. I am feeling like I am not going to be prepared for the super hilly half I have scheduled in 8 weeks, so your tips were comforting to read. I know I just need to accept the race for whatever it's going to be and have fun! Also, I want ALL of your food. Chocolate bacon donut?!?!

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  12. I have never even tried to enter a race! I do run on the treadmill sometimes but nothing more adventurous than that. I'm a fellow Baltimorean so come say hi!

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  13. yes to all of this! esp the having a plan part. before tough mudder, i spent months researching and planning for it since it was about 2hrs outside of my city and i was staying over night. everything was ready a week before the actual event and i was glad i did that because i was nervous and i didn't need any stress from poorly-planned shenanigans!

    and thanks for your kinds words about my post on twitter :)

    -kathy | Vodka and Soda

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  14. Good luck! I'll be cheering for you...from my couch!!! xo

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