1. Gear Up
If you are a first timer to an adventure race and you are not sure whether or not it’s for you, then investing large amounts of money on equipment may not be for you. There are lots of cheap alternatives available to you. See this blog from a while back. But if you feel like you will be getting a lot more active, then go to a running store, where you can get your running style accessed (for free) and get the appropriate trainer for you.
2. Get your plan in place
Ideally you should give yourself 2 to 3 months to train (depending on your fitness levels). Give yourself realistic training goals. Consider your working & personal life. Be sure not to let training take over your life. This is supposed to be fun after all.
3. Wind down
As you draw closer to the main event, you should reduce your training levels, so come match day, you are fighting fit.
4. The Importance of Listening to your Body!
As described in an earlier blog, if your muscles say no, then sometimes a rest can be as good as a training session. Injury is most likely to happen when the muscles are weak.
If you can manage to train at the same time as your event, especially in the days/weeks leading up to it, it allows your body to regulate. Also, try to train with the same clothing/equipment as you will be wearing on race day.
6. Right grub
Make sure you eat the right food in the week leading up to the event. Nothing too spicy or exotic.
7. Carb Loading
Plenty of Carbs. Carbs are essential. See earlier blog.
8. Wakey wakey
If possible, try and get up at least 3 hours before race start. If it’s an early start and you are not an early riser by nature, your body will need adequate rest to cope, so a little earlier to bed and no caffeine before you hit the hay.
9. Check list
You should write up a check list in the days leading up to your race. Adventure/multisport races require a lot of equipment and the likelihood is you might forget something if you dont
It’s a personal one this, but I always work from the finish line backwards and visualize exactly what i will need to do to get there…obviously with victorious music and cheering from my adoring legions of fans:)
11. Start slow…finish strong
As much as you want to blast out of the blocks, don’t! You will run out of steam and the rest of the race will be hellish. Remember this is supposed to be fun.
12. Break it down!
If the thoughts of the distance you have signed up for, send a shiver down your spine, break it into manageable chunks.
13. Grease up
For the men, if its a chilly day, use plenty Vaseline on those nipples. Useless as they are to you, they can cause considerable discomfort from chafing.
14. Get a Pedicure!
Well, at least give yourself one. The pain from overgrown nail scratching cannot be under estimated. Trim those fish hooks
Throughout the course, you will be surprised by race camera men. You want to look good when sharing those photos from friends…link
16. Time for a tinkle
make sure to go to the loo before you start. You do not want to break your momentum by having to make pit stops on the way.
17. Know Your Course
Get to know the course beforehand. Most event packs will have a map accompanying them. Find out where the hills and valleys are. Also where the fuel stations are too.
One of the main fears for first timers are their lack of kayaking experience. Don’t worry. Its simple. Within the first 30 seconds you will have sussed it. You will not drown either! You are giving bouyancy jacket in the unlikely event of you capsizing. Check out our blog on kayaking for first timers.
19. No Fonzies
Lads, if you can manage to show your face in public without the lashings of hair gel, then do it. As the race goes on you will most likely sweat…a lot…and down comes the gel into the eyes. Not ideal whilst kayaking or on the bike or anytime for that matter.
20. Enjoy yourself
This might seem obvious but sometimes it’s easy to forget that this is supposed to be fun. There is no use in getting yourself in a muddle if you think you haven’t done enough preparation. By this stage, you can only go at the level you are prepared for. So make the most of the day, the scenery, the comradery & enjoy the race!