How to Take the Stress Out of Pre-Race Travel
For dedicated runners, traveling for races becomes a regular part of pursuing the sport. However, heading out all over the country in pursuit of your next big race adds an additional element to your pre-race checklist. There’s a lot more planning involved when you’re resting up for the run in a hotel room instead of in your own home. In order to perform your best and cut down on stress, consider these tips for pre-race travel:
- Give yourself plenty of time to get to your final destination: Unfortunately, even the best-laid plans can get ruined due to poor weather, airplane delays, and other unplanned issues. If you’re running a race in another city, you’ll want to give yourself plenty of time to travel to that place and get settled in before the race starts. Runners don’t perform their best when they’re under a significant amount of stress or pressed for time. Ideally you’ll want to have two days to get to where you need to be. This allows you time to settle in, relax, and mentally prep before the race.
- Plan your meals accordingly: Experienced runners know that pre-race meals are a key component to success. The foods you eat before a race require a little more thought when you don’t have your normal kitchen and pantry to rely on. Prior to your departure, do some research about restaurants in the area that might provide healthy, nutritious meals. There are numerous apps that can steer in you in the right direction when you’re looking for a meal to give you fuel for your run. I used Urbanspoon when I did the Super Sunday 5K in Philly and it worked out great! You can also rely on the hotel’s concierge for guidance, as they’ll have a good idea about the kinds of dining options that are readily available nearby.
- Take care of arrangements at home: If you’re worried about what’s going on at home, you simply won’t be able to perform your best during the race. I was so nervous about our dog Brodie being left at home so we ended up bring him to Philly for the Super Sunday 5K. We actually used a great pet sitter to take care of him on race day! Remember to take care of all other arrangements at home before you leave. Ask a neighbor or family member to water your plants and check your mail, and also make sure that assignments that you normally handle at work will be taken care of by a colleague. When you know that these tasks are under control, you’ll be able to relax and focus fully on the race ahead.
- Save sightseeing for after the event is over: When you travel to a new city for a race, you’ll want to check out everything that place has to offer, particularly if you’ve never been there before. However, make sure to go easy on the sightseeing until your event is done. Some runners spend the days leading up to the race dashing from place to place, and then find that their energy levels are zapped when it’s actually time to compete. Don’t make this mistake. There’s plenty of time to do partake in tourist activities once you’ve crossed the finish line. Before then, make sure to conserve your energy.
Arianna is a full-time mom and a fashion-lover, world traveler, animal lover, and family woman extraordinaire. She loves to cook and bake, travel to new places, share great fashion finds, and spend time doing crafts and projects at home with her kids. She’s got a crazy busy life, but she wouldn’t have it any other way! Follow her blog at !