Five Favorite Race Day Tips
Welcome to the Friday Five! Triathlon Season has already kicked off in warmer regions of the Country. In fact, I virtually cheered on several people competing at Ironman Texas 70.3 last weekend. It spawned some much needed motivation for me and made me start contemplating my own race, which is just 10 short weeks away! With this in mind, I am sharing my top 5 triathlon race day tips for having a smooth & enjoyable experience.
1. PREPARE: Get everything ready the night before and lay out your gear to make sure you have everything. I start with the Swim: Tri Kit, TIMING CHIP, Wetsuit, Glide or Tri Slide, Race Swim Cap, & 2 pairs of goggles, watch, & heart rate monitor. Next up the bike: Bike Helmet, Bike Shoes, Place Race Numbers in all the appropriate places (typically helmet, top tube, & stem). I set my tire pump by my bike so I can pump them up in the morning. At this point, if it is a longer race, I organize my nutrition. Last the Run: Sneakers with fast laces, visor, fuel belt (if using one), & number belt with race bib attached.
2. ENVISION THE DAY: I go through everything and visualize the race, getting in & out of the water, heading to transition, getting on my bike & heading out on the run. Envisioning the process, helps me make sure I have everything I need and prepare for any obstacles that I may encounter.
3. ARRIVE EARLY!: I have to admit that I am not typically an early bird & have been known to get to places right on time or be fashionably late. However, when it comes to a race, I always get there early. It helps alleviate anxiety and keeps my heart rate down as I am not rushing around frantically trying to set up everything. The other plus about arriving early is you will avoid some of the race day traffic.
4. ORGANIZE TRANSITION: After you arrive early, you can set up your transition. Try to keep it neat and put out only what you need. I use a small towel to place everything on. I set my bike shoes down first with my glasses placed on top ready to put on , then I put my helmet over them. This setup allows me to put my helmet on first, as this is the Most Important Item & you can not leave transition without it on & snapped! Next, I put my race number belt down and place my running sneakers on top of it. I open up the shoes and put a little glide on the heals to make them easier to slip on. I also sprinkle my socks (if wearing them) with baby powder. Then, I place my running visor on top. Again, this is all methodical so that when I come into T2, I put my visor on, next my shoes, & last my number belt.
5. REVIEW THE COURSE: In a perfect world, we would be able to swim, bike, & run on the course we are racing on before the event. However, this is not always an option when we are traveling to events out of town. I like to review the course on a map or drive the bike & run course before, just so I am a little familiar with the roads and can plan for anything that could catch me off guard on race day. I also like to familiarize myself with the swim course on race morning once the bouys are in the water and I can check out what land marks are good to use for sighting.
These are a few of my favorite tips, I hope you find them helpful! As always, please let me know if you have any questions!