Staten Island Advance News + Race Week Checklist

I’m really excited to share that I have teamed up with my hometown newspaper, the Staten Island Advance, to talk about all things related to the NYC Marathon. I’ll be writing a few posts/articles that will be shared here, on their website and in print a few times over the next 10 days.

Staten Island Advance

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Race day is just 9 days away…which means we are about to enter race week. It’s that time in training when you are running less miles than you have the last 12-18 weeks. Race week is always filled with a lot of free time. And if you are like me, the decrease in running and increase in extra time goes hand-in-hand with elevated stress levels and thinking about next Sunday.

But rather than sit around and stress about race day, I try to plan ahead and ensure that everything is ready for the days and hours leading up to the race. Having a detailed checklist keeps me on track and focused and makes race week feel less stressful.

Below is what goes on my list:

  • Plan Meals / Race Nutrition: I createa a rough plan of what I will eat starting about 3-4 days out from the race through post-race. Once I do that, I ensure I purchase whatever non-perishable items as soon as I can. And then I add last-minute necessities (banana, bagel) to my to-do list (day before the race to ensure they are fresh).
    • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner: I meal plan 3-4 days out from the marathon. I aim for light, plain and simple meals focusing on carbs and protein.
    • Snacks: Shop for lighter snacks high in salt and carbs (pretzels, trail mix, bagels)
    • Pre-Race Meal: Do what you have done for long runs and/or tuneup race. I typically eat a bagel with coconut oil + banana.
    • Race Nutrition: Ensure I have enough Gels, chomps, Generation Ucan for race morning and the race. If I don’t, I make a note on my list to purchase at the expo.

photo 2

  • Race Outfit: I plan for two outfits – for good and inclement weather:
    • Shirt (tank/long sleeves)
    • Shorts/capris
    • Sports bra
    • Socks (or compression socks)
    • Shoes
    • Arm warmers (if necessary)
    • Visor or hat

photo (31)

  • Toss Away Gear: You will be at Fort Wadsworth for several hours. It’s better to overdress and ditch layers when you get there than to under-dress and spend a few hours shivering in the cold. I typically wear gloves, hat, sweatpants and a sweatshirt that I’m okay with parting with. If you don’t have any old clothing, head to the dollar store and get some cheap gear to toss at the start.
  • Change of clothes for post-race: Sweatshirt, sweatpants, hat, gloves, socks, flip flops (vital if you end up with blisters!). This bag either is given to a member of my family who will be at the finish or I check it at the start so I have access to it post-race.
  • Finalize race morning transportation and logistics: I backwards plan and determine what time I will have to get up on race day. The 1st wave doesn’t start until 9:40am, but you will need to get to Fort Wadsworth before 8:00am (bag drop ends at 8:10am for wave 1). For those of us coming from Staten Island, we don’t have to deal with the ferry or bus system; however, keep in mind you may have to walk ~1 mile to the start from road closures around Fort Wadsworth. (All corral times can be found here.)
  • Decorate race outfit:  I would definitely recommend writing your name on your race shirt (with decals, colored tape, sharpie marker) especially if it is your first marathon or first NYC Marathon. There is nothing as exciting as hearing thousands of spectators cheering YOUR name as you run by.
NYC Marathon

I wrote my name on my shirt for the 2007 NYC Marathon

  • Music: I run with my iPod in training and races (although I won’t be next Sunday). Early in the week, I download some new tunes and create a new playlist for race day.
  • Errands: What needs to happen this week? Try to plan it out so you can get your errands done early in the week – save yourself the energy and stress from running around the day or two before the race. This includes the trip to the expo to pick up your bib and other race items – don’t put it off until the last moment!
  • Hair/Nails: Something about having bright, fun nails to look down at while I’m running and a freshly cut / colored head of hair makes me feel like I’m ready to race.
  • Miscellaneous Items: 
    • Body Glide
    • Sunscreen (if it’s going to be a sunny day)
    • Lip Balm
    • Trash Bag (if forecast is calling for rain)
    • Blanket – this is great if you will be at Fort Wadsworth for a few hours – you can sit on the blanket and not worry about the wet or cold grass
NYC Marathon next Sunday!

Fort Wadsworth – set up for the 2011 NYC Marathon

 What goes on your race week checklist? 

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I don’t post here every day, but I post all of my workouts (and other happenings) on Instagram on a daily basis {NYCRunningMama}.

For More NYC Running Mama training updates, pictures and ramblings, check out:

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