Marathon Training: The Evening Before the Big (BIG!) Race
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As you know, I ran the Inaugural Missoula Marathon back in 2007 – the whole 26.2 miles during the hottest summer on record. I know the temps were in the 90’s and I believe it got up to like 102 degrees F that day.
The night before the race I was both excited and nervous. I don’t know why I get so nervous before a race, because I go in with no expectations of winning…so why the nerves?
I guess it’s probably more accurately described as nervous energy. And I’m glad I can still get that way before a race. The raw energy of the other runners, the loud music vibrating and thumping at the starting area, the anticipation, and the cheers of the crowds as the cannon goes off gets my blood pumping. All these things piled together at 6 in the morning would make anyone excited and nervous!
So the night before my full marathon I tried on my race day outfit: I was trying to decide which hat to wear. Should I wear the red “Runner’s Edge” one, or the gray Missoula Marathon running hat I just bought that day? When in doubt, I ask T. She is always a good sport, and I trust her fashion sense…and besides that, she has her eyesight. I live my life with the philosophy that it’s always good to have at least one person around who can actually see.
She said the red one looked better. Then I had to decide which wrist sweat bands should I wear? I had gotten both light blue and red. We decided the red was better, as the light blue wasn’t the right color of blue to coordinate with my running top. We pinned my race number on my shirt: there, I was now set with my clothes.
Now I had to get ready all the stuff I was going to take with me. I got out the clip-on pocket I was going to use. It wasn’t the most ideal thing, as it was not really designed for running. Since this was my first long race, I wanted to bring everything I thought I might need with me.
Looking back at it, it wasn’t really necessary, but life’s all about learning…so I learned. But this was my first marathon, and I wanted the security of having all my stuff with me. So I packed the pocket. I had my Lifesavers, Chap Stick, extra batteries for my MP3 player, tissue, two Power Bar gels, and looped through the side: an extra pair of sunglasses. The sunglasses were different shades which help me with different lighting conditions.
When I picked up my fully packed pocket, I was a bit concerned with how much it weighed, but since I wasn’t ready to leave any of it, for now it would have to do.
I was still undecided about taking my MP3 player with me, so I laid it out as well. I also had my flasher and cell phone. Hmmmm, I was going to be really loaded down – maybe I was a bit out of control! Oh well…
With a 6:30 a.m. start I wanted to be up by 4:30 as we had to drive about 20 miles to the start of the race, and after six or seven months of training for this thing, I wanted to be sure I was fully prepared and didn’t forget anything. I did manage to go to bed early, but with the heat, sleep was hard to come by. I did manage to get some sleep, but it was a fitful night.
Stay Tuned…More Fun Coming!
How ’bout it?
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Title: Marathon Training: The Evening Before the Big (BIG!) Race
P.S.S. You’ll want to check out my Run Over To Ellen’s fundraising run. We only need 30,000 people to donate $1 each. When you get your donation in and get your private access to the donor’s only daily updates, you’ll want to go check out the video blog because we love to do give-aways to our donor’s.
We have always made changes in our lives by taking baby steps. We did this when we wanted to start eating healthier, when we switched over to drinking more water by getting re-usable BPA-free plastic water bottles, and more recently here, we have done the same thing with our desire to be more environmentally conscientious. One of those “baby steps” was to buy reusable shopping bags. Now the ones we bought to put our groceries in, we keep in the van. And they are easy for us to remember when we pull up to the store. But we also use the bags to haul in stuff from the van, such as mail and other items we have accumulated while out running errands. For example, if I have to go to say, maybe the running store to buy a couple of things, for example maybe a new running shirt!! (Yee-ha!) and some energy gels, we don’t have to get a bag from the store, we just drop them into the re-usable grocery bag on the back seat. In fact, sometimes we refer to it as “the errand bag.”
When it was light enough out for me to start running home from work in the morning, I needed to bring my lunch and running clothing to work with me. I was using a backpack during the months I would walk or take the bus home, but I didn’t really want to run home with a backpack on. So at first I started using plastic grocery bags. But since we were trying to cut down on our use of plastic bags, I thought I would get several tote bags to take to work. Later during the week, when we were out running errands, we could swing by the hospital and pick them up with all my re-usable lunch containers and work clothes.
So off we went in search of tote bags. My plan was to buy four, one for every day I worked during the week. I found some small tote bags that would work, but then T pointed out a nylon re-usable grocery bag that folded up into a little pouch with a small carabineer on it. It seemed perfect, as I could just get the one bag instead of four, and bring it home each morning clipped to my running shorts.
So that’s what I got and it’s worked out great! I no longer use the plastic bags to carry all my stuff to work.
It’s just one more baby step we are taking to go green.
If you’re getting value out of this blog, you can do me a favor by linking to us and mentioning my Run Over To Ellen’s fundraising project to friends and co-workers. Here’s the link information for this article:
Title: Baby Steps
Preparation For Marathon Race Day – Forget the Miles: It’s All About the Running Clothing! Really!
As the marathon day drew near, I was well into my marathon training program, and as long as I stayed healthy, there was no question – I was going to run this marathon!
So before the cut-off date when the price to register went up, I registered for the marathon. Now I was committed – no backing out – not that I would have, I was excited, and the excitement just kept building as I started planning what to wear for the big race.
Of course this monumental event called for a new outfit. I knew I wanted to wear red for sure as I like red, plus there’s the psychological edge it gives to wear a fast color. But I was having trouble finding just the right pair of red shorts. It was hot, Hot, HOT in Montana that summer, and I wanted a stratus-cut for lots of ventilation.
I looked online, but was disappointed with the choices, so one afternoon I walked down to the Runner’s Edge, our local running store, and found just what I had been so desperately searching for: a pair of red Hind stratus-cut shorts. Albeit in men’s, but that didn’t matter, as they had a size small.
So now that I had the running shorts, I needed the right running shirt to go with it. I found a nice blue one and I was set. I had my WrightSocks ready, and a new outfit in hand: I was stoked.
I didn’t wear my new clothes ahead of the race day, except for a short trial run. Some runners run their long marathon training runs in the clothes they will run in on race day, so there will be no surprises as to how the garments will feel and perform – to ensure there are no unexpected seams rubbing the wrong way, etc. But me, I bathe in the rush of new running clothes, so just a short, quick test-drive of my new race day running outfit was fine. Oh and I also got a new running hat…red, from the Runner’s Edge, too. Now I was set.
The forecast was calling for more hot weather and it ended up being one of our hottest summers on record. I thought we could find some cool neck wraps. These things are great. We had used them the summer before, and so I knew that by soaking them in water and then putting them in the refrigerator, they get nice and cool and the refreshing coolness lasts quite a while.
So off we went in search of neck wraps. We found some at Wal-Mart, but when we soaked them in water they turned slimy! Yuck! I couldn’t wear that! So we returned those. We eventually found some at a sports warehouse that didn’t turn slimy. I wanted about three so that T could meet me on the road and change them out for me during the race.
My other quandary was finding a running pocket. I had stuff I wanted to take with me on the long run, but the little pocket in my shorts would not be big enough to hold my mints, ChapStick, energy beans, and extra battery if I decided to take my MP3 player.
I didn’t want a fanny pack as I didn’t want to deal with the bouncing of a fanny pack on my waist for 26.2 miles. So I looked in all the stores, but all I could find were cell phone cases. I bought several of them hoping I would find the right fit, but none were what I was looking for. I even looked online, but no luck. So I settled for a carrier a little bit larger then a cell phone case. It was a bit bulky, but it held all the stuff I wanted to take, so it would have to do.
A year later I found the perfect running pocket by Amphipod. It was in Illinois while visiting family – right there in a local running store! I can’t seem to find it available anymore, so I’m a little afraid that they may have stopped making them.
Another last-minute buy was a pair of wrist sweat bands. Knowing race day was going to be extremely hot, having the wrist bands would be vital to keeping sweat out of my eyes. And I was right; my hat could not keep all the sweat from running down my face as it ended up being over 90 degrees F that day! So I got wristbands in both light blue and red, not sure which would coordinate better with my running outfit.
Okay now you might be thinking that I was spending way too much time on what I was going to wear, more then any sane person would. But if you’ve been following my blog, you know how much I love running clothing. And for me, it’s all a part of the excitement and for sure, choosing the best running outfit is a huge motivation factor, as well.
Just to update you on my RunOverToEllens.com 1,222.25 mile Fundraising Run, I’m over 25% of the way to Burbank, California. We’re having a drawing for anyone who’s donated at least $1 by Friday June 12. The winner will receive a free pair of Runner’s Edge running socks. Don’t fret if you’re not a runner, they work for walking or sitting, too. So get your donations in by Friday! Just go to the secure website at www.FirstGiving.com/VisionRunner . Or you can click on the FirstGiving widget in the sidebar. Thanks a lot!
I'd like to donate a cuppa coffee to Vision Runner, as I understand that all that running and writing requires a great deal of strength and energy and focus......
I'd like to send Vision Runner $10.00 so that she can get a gift card for her favorite coffee establishment.
I'm feeling very creative and I don't want to be inhibited by someone else's choices. I'm going to pick my own dollar amount...cause what if I want it to end with 46 cents or something?
What about me? I need some for me..... (Go ahead. Order some for yourself, why don't ya?)