Friday, November 16, 2012

Race Prep

This should really be titled "BIG Race Prep and Mental Word-Vomit", because preparing for a 5k is hardly anything these days and this post is mostly going to be anxious garbage. But if not here, then where, right? Anyway, Sunday brings my Half, and it's been well over a year since I've run a race of this distance. Two Saturdays ago K and I ran an excellently paced 13-mile long run, and that's done wonders for my confidence, but last weekend's long run was rough and has left a bad after-taste in my mouth.

So preparation needs to be spot-on for this one.

I've been analyzing weather and allergens, weighing all my options for clothing, editing and rearranging my running playlist, using my foam roller multiple times a day, and still I feel flustered. Is there a such thing as being over-prepared?

Although the weather report calls for low-60s and sun, the weather has been partially overcast the past few days. I'm hoping this trend sticks around; I'd love an overcast run in the 60s! Sunshine is running's nemesis. I think if I take enough Claritin, Nasonex, Sudafed, and Hydroxyzine, I'll be able to fend off any allergy attacks. I plan to be a walking pharmacy on Sunday.
Seriously, is ragweed good for anything?

Right now the plan is to pack as many possible outfits as I can - we're staying at my parents', so why not? - and to try to remember my foam roller, Immodium, sunglasses, iPod charger, asthma inhaler, water bottle, travel coffee mug, and warmup clothes, while still remembering my confirmation packet and paperwork. Once we leave home, anything I've forgotten is a lost cause. My mom has stocked up on K's and my usual breakfast-of-champions, so at least that's set!

I've also been mentally editing my goals. I've fixed the bracelet I made with the charm K got me last year with my previous Half time/date etched onto it so I can wear it on race day. It's a reminder that I can and must break my last dismally slow time. My goals for this race are to successfully run the entire thing (allowing for two water breaks) at a pace of 10:18 or faster. My finishing goal is still 2:15, but I think if I let the adrenaline take charge, I could make 2:10.

This looks promising!
Luckily, this Half is much bigger than our first; there will be a local running club providing pacers, and K and I both plan to sign up. SB is also running this Half, so we'll meet up with her after to fully enjoy the benefits of post-run massages, food, drinks, and fun.

Honestly, this is more a list of things I need to remember than having anything to do with preparation. But the point is that I need to get all this out of my head before I go insane from anxiety. Even though I'm better trained (there's an understatement!) and have a Half under my belt, I feel more nervous for this one than the last. It seems like more is riding on it.

The hours leading up to it are the worst, but I know once I'm out there I'll feel great. And once it's over...Well, I'm excited to wear my medal to work for the kiddos, and I will rock my post-race waddle with pride!


PS: I hit my newest Nike+ milestone this morning! I'm officially at the Blue level!

Finally, I've done my last two runs without my knee brace. I'm toying with the idea of not wearing the brace on Sunday, but I'll pack it just in case, of course.

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