{Fitness Saturday: How I prepare for the big race day}

Finally the weekend is here! Hope you all are enjoying your Saturday.

So I thought I’d do a post on my race ritual seeing as my long awaited Canmore half marathon is tomorrow…(the pic is of a fleece hat we got in our race package)

Here is a list of my routine and tips I’ve learned from past race experiences..


1. Eat low fibre and carb rich meals – The last thing I need is stomach issues during the race. Lots of people do the “pasta dinner” ritual, but I prefer my bigger meal to be earlier in the day, so this morning me and the boy went to Red’s Diner (I know..what else is new..)

I went for a stack of 3 buttermilk buckwheat pancakes..(like this pic below I pulled from the archives + one more cake, smeared with peanut butter and maple syrup and a side chopped up apples, bananas and pears). These pancakes are nutty, fluffy and the perfect texture..I could eat breakfast all day I think..

My dinner the night before usually consists of baked sweet potato slices slathered with raw almond butter, sprinkled with cinnamon and a drizzle of maple syrup.

I usually roast mine in the oven, but I was busy tonight, so I popped it in the microwave for 5 min = perfectly cooked through tender medallions of goodness..

Oooh, how I love opening a fresh jar of raw almond butter.. so thick and creamy…I’ve been on a bit of a peanut butter kick, so nice to have this old friend back in my life..

2. Gather all your s*&t together the night before – When you have to get up before the sunrises and you didn’t sleep well the night before because you’re so anxious about the race, you’re bound to forget something! Solution: I have a race day checklist taped into my agenda that I go through and put everything in a pile for myself in the morning. Some of my essentials:

1. Alba botanical lip balm – dry lips suck in Calgary climate. I love the pineapple flavour (found at health food stores).

2. Body glide: chafing is no fun on a run, I also coat my feet in Vaseline before I put on my synthetic (NOT COTTON) socks. I know, gross. But I was blister free after my full marathon and my feet were super soft.. bonus!

3. Alba botanical sunscreen – even if it’s overcast, being outside awhile can wreck havoc on your face.

4. Tissues – for a runny nose or going to a porta potty with no toilet paper

5. Lucky purple lululemon hat – worn for my past 3 races

6. Bib belt – got this for the marathon, so great cause I can slide it down and take off my top layers as the weather heats up. My first 10km I safety pinned the for corners of my bib ontop of a lulu zipup.. yea.. reaaaal dumb.

7. IPOD shuffle – loaded with upbeat power songs to distract me from my heavy breathing when the going gets tough

8. Lululemon runners gloves – a must during those chilly mornings

Also my Garmin GPS watch to keep me on track, a keylime pie LARAbar I split up and eat 1/4-1/2 the bar once every hour and my handheld water bottle.

..and more snackies and hydration..my coconut water and a Goji cranberry almond nut protein bar post-run from my gym. The only protein bar I like and will eat..

Packed with goodness.. I wish I could get the recipe for this, this one tastes kinda like vanilla waffle cone.. yumm…

3. Do NOT eat anything new – Now is NOT the time to experiment with that indian curry or spicy kung pao chicken. Last thing I want to be spending time in those porta potties on the course.. ick..

4. Resist the temptation to do a full workout or run – Hrmm.. well I relaxed last night, but couldn’t resist the urge to do an hour of my  favourite cardio class at the gym this morning.. oops.. will do lots of foam rolling and stretching tonight.

5. Drink your fluids – It’s very important to make sure your body is nice and hydrated so you don’t dehydrate the day of the race.


1. Eat your tried and true breakfast – Something you know you can stomach. My choice: a slice of multigrain toast with raw almond butter and apricot jam

2. Hydrate!– I drink water up until an hour before the race. During the race, I have my coconut water in my handheld bottle and refill with water at the stations. I found this works well for me well because the first few stations get really packed and I run best with just small sips of fluid more often than gulping down a whole cup at once.

3. Make sure to go the bathroom before – Again.. don’t want any issues during the race..

4. Stay loose – It’s important to warm up the muscles with some dynamic stretches so you don’t end up injuring yourself (I always find I start pretty fast to get out of the initial crowd of people).

5. Dress appropriately – Mornings can be chilly and warm up later in the race, so I wear layers I can take off as needed

6. Have FUN! – Race day is always so motivating. Being around everyone and using my tactic of zeroing in on someone ahead of me and “reeling them in” and passing them. I usually download a new playlist to get me pumped up and excited about the run too.

After the race, make sure to keep walking to cool down and catch your breath and stretch those muscles to help ease the stiffness you’ll feel the next day. If I’m really sore the next day, I find a massage really helps to release the tension and push out all that lactic acid buildup in the legs.

Drink lots of fluids and the best part, EAT!! Make sure to eat as soon as possible (even if you don’t want to), I found out in my first half marathon the reason I was so nauseous after my run was because I waited too long before getting fuel back into my body.

In other news, I FINALLY got a bib to run in my favourite race (also one of the most popular races in Alberta, it sells out the moment registration opens). The Melissa’s 22km Road Race in Banff which is less than two weeks after the Canmore half. I can’t wait 😀

This was me after the race last year…amongst the gorgeous Rocky Mountains (haha minus the porta potties, it’s beautiful here)…

3 Responses to “{Fitness Saturday: How I prepare for the big race day}”
  1. I see you prefer Zico coconut water. Have you tasted other brands and what do you think?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: