Before a competition it’s crucial that you’re not only prepared physically but also mentally. Remember that chance favors the one who’s the most prepared, so the more ready you are, the more likely you are to succeed if something wrong were to happen. Muscle memory will help react quickly in the appropriate manner in a given situation. Other than training and conditioning here’s a couple of things you should do to prepare for the big day:
The Night Before
Prepare your equipment bag with everything you need so you’re stress free in the morning! This includes:
· Sweats/ warm-ups
· Spikes w/ extra spikes and wrench
· Water/ Gatorade
· Healthy snacks
Drink lots of water before you go sleep to make sure you stay nice and hydrated. GO TO SLEEP EARLY and don’t stay out too late! You can party after you win a medal at your race! I can’t emphasize this enough! There’s nothing worse than running a race while you’re still tired and groggy. Go to sleep earlier than usual to make sure you’re nice and rested when you wake up. Also make sure that you set an alarm to wake up on time so that you don’t miss your bus or that you’re not late for your race.
The Morning Of
I’m not fond of this but eat a light and healthy breakfast! I’m not really a fan of eating so early in the morning but I know that it’s good for my body. I usually eat a banana, a bowl of cereal, a CLIFF bar, or a yogurt. Since you made your bag the night before, you really have nothing to worry about. Do relaxing things to stay calm and don’t worry about your race too much. I like to listen to music or close my eyes. I don’t like to worry about my race until I’m actually running it. And if you’re well trained you actually have nothing to worry about.
In The Blocks
At this point everything is a mental game. Stay focused on the task at hand and don’t even worry about the competition around you because this is YOUR RACE and they’re just running with you. Don’t focus on winning but rather on reaching your personal goals. You should trust in yourself that you’ve done everything you possibly could have in order to prepare for this race. Don’t change anything up last minute and just do everything you’ve done at practice up to this point. Have a routine you go through while getting into the blocks. I like to do two chest jumps, and then jiggle out my legs to make sure my muscles are nice and lose. Then I stretch down to touch my toes then I slowly crawl back into the blocks. I kick out my legs before putting them on the pedals. After that I take a deep breath while I set my hands right behind the line. At this point I like to give myself a little pep talk to get my nerves down, then I take one more deep breath and then stop moving for the red coat to call set. Anything after that is a blur and it’s all up to you.