I completed my first half marathon this past Sunday. Racing more was part of my 2015 goals and I am very happy with how it went. Perfect conditions, not too much pain, great route. I read a lot of running blogs and running magazines and I know how important the small details can influence how a race goes.
For this race, I spent a lot of time deciding what to eat, what to wear, planning logistics. Much more than I had anticipated !
checked obsessed about the weather all week. Finally, they were announcing sunny, about 10 degrees celcius, about 53 farenheit. I will take it !
I laid out my clothes on Saturday.
- Socks that were not too thin, because I wanted some cushion
- Running pants that are not too tight around the waist. Thank you Nike !
- A shirt that will wick moisture, and is long around the hips (I hate it when shirts ride up). Thanks again Nike !
- A thin top for a second layer
- Brooks GTS
Up until that point, all was fine. I chose pieces of clothing that I wear regularly, are comfortable in and I know will not chafe. Ones that have pockets that I am used to using.
Its the layering after that I had a hard time with. Do I need a hat ? Gloves ? An extra layer ? A neck warmer ? I brought all of this to the race, just in case. I thought about it for a good part of the week because the parking was supposed to be quite far from the race start, so I didn’t know what I could bring / carry etc.
I often run in 40 degree weather, where the sun has not fully warmed the atmosphere, and usually have 3 layers. My gut told me though that it would be a bit warmer for the race, but at the same time I HATE being cold. So back and forth it went like this for a few days.
While I was waiting for the race to start there was a 10 K going on that I went to watch and walked around a bit with my third layer. People were running in tank tops and running shorts. That sealed it for me. A third layer was DEFINITELY not going to happen.
I also went back and forth about my hands. I love my thin, pink Underarmor top, but it does not have any built in hand warmers. But I feel so good in it, I even wrote a post about it. So after further hemming and hawing, I decided that a thin layer, no hand warmers would work for 53 degree weather.
And it did ! Phew, great choice. I was not too hot, nor too cold, no chafing, not wet, no blister.
All of this might seem life a bit over the top, but I think small details like this have such an impact on performance.
Fellow runners, what do you spend time obsessing about before a race ?