Preparing for the Newport 10k

This morning I received, via the Facebook “on this day” app, that a year ago today I ran a fast Newport 10k.

This year certainly won’t be the same, although after running the Highland Park 5k yesterday in a respectable time a week after the London Marathon, I have some hope that it won’t be really slow.

What should you be doing if you feel you haven’t had enough preparation before the 10k?

  1. Relax! Is it really that bad? What is your goal? Is it your first 10k or were you hoping to get a PR? If this is your first 10k, perhaps you feel you haven’t increased your distance enough? If it’s your first, don’t underestimate the power of race day to get you through! Don’t worry if you end up walking some of it – you won’t be the only one. If your aim was to PR, and you don’t think you’re there yet, don’t hang everything on it. Go out and enjoy it – maybe, just maybe, you’ll be in for a surprise.
  2. Don’t overdo it in the next week and a half. Don’t try to make up for lost time. You run a greater risk of injury and may end up sabotaging your race day coming to the start line worn out.
  3. During the race, start easy. Starting slower will help you see how good you feel and may allow you to make up time later (this happened to me last year – I started conservatively, picked up the pace halfway through and passed people all the way to the finish. Having targets ahead of you to pick off one by one can be a real motivator).

What to expect on race day:

  1. Know where you are going: Directions are provided on the site, with parking information.
  2. Know what time you need to be there: and plan accordingly. Bibs can only be picked up on race day. Allow time to get your bib, get back to your car with anything you don’t want to run with (or line up for bag check), use the restrooms/portapotties (expect lines, although the line has been well-organized in previous years to get things moving as quickly as possible).
  3. Read the race info: pay attention to the information sent out by the organizers. This will cover anything you should be particularly aware of. For example, the website indicates that new bag check procedures will be in place and to plan for extra time if using bag check. Perhaps leave your bag in a car, or at least get there early enough to not be rushed or worried.
  4. Keep an eye on the weather: At this time of year the weather can be variable. Previous years have had a cold start so be prepared. It may also warm up during the race (you will certainly feel warmer running than you did at the start line). Consider layers that are easy to remove, long sleeves that may be rolled up, etc. Odds are very good that you won’t need more than a t-shirt and shorts during the run so being a little cold at the start may be a small price to pay for comfort during the race.

What are your best tips for race day success?

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