Get Race Day Ready



Read these tips from, the official website of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series.

Training, nutrition and gear tips for the days leading up to your big race.

The final two days before a race are very important. The final workouts, meals, equipment and mental preparations and logistical planning you do in this window can have a major impact on your performance — for better or worse. Here’s a checklist of things to do in the 48-hour race countdown to ensure that you get the most out of the hard training you’ve done.

Start carbo-loading

Research shows that one day of very high carbohydrate intake (4.5 grams of carbohydrate per pound of body weight) is sufficient to maximize muscle glycogen stores. But you might as well start two days out for good measure. The best time to start carbo-loading is right after your short, fast workout, when your muscles are most receptive to glucose.

It takes some work to consume 4.5g of carbs per pound of body weight in a single day. To get there, be sure to consume high-carb foods and beverages at every meal (e.g. oatmeal and orange juice for breakfast, noodle soup for lunch and a rice dish for dinner) and supplement with high-carb beverages such as Ensure between meals.

Get a good night’s sleep

Getting adequate sleep is critical to endurance performance at all times, but it is never more important than in the final days before a big race. In a recent British study, runners covered 6 percent less distance in a 30-minute time trial after being awake for 30 hours than they ran after a full night’s rest. While that’s a pretty extreme sleep deprivation, even a few lost hours of rest could keep you from reaching your race goal.

Because of pre-race jitters and early-morning race starts, it can be difficult to get a full eight hours of shuteye the night before a race. So be sure to get a good, long sleep two nights out.

Plan for race morning

Race morning logistics can be a pain in the neck, especially if you are not prepared. Minimize the hassle by making a concrete plan for race morning that includes a wake-up time, a route to the race venue, a parking site and arrangements to get home after the race. Spend some time on the event website and/or looking over the race’s official printed materials to gather all of the information you will need for a smooth race morning.

Warm up thoroughly

Start your warmup about half an hour before your race start. Begin with easy jogging, then do some dynamic stretches such as walking lunges and arm circles, and finish with a few 20- to 30-second bursts at race pace.

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Put these tips to use and start training for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Los Angeles Half Marathon.
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