Race Day Morning Routine

Early bird gets the worm
Know where you are going. Bring race directions and give yourself enough time to get there. You'll get your heart racing too hard if you're lost or late. Get to the race early!

Morning Routine: Arrival at the race

Nutrition: Eat hearty breakfast at home or on the way to the race. Examples: oatmeal, bagel and peanut butter, Powerbar.
Hydrate: For a couple days before the race, morning of and during the race.
Supplemental Nutrition: Energy bars or gels like GU, Powergel

Key: Try the nutritional supplements you are going to use in training before the race. You don't want to try something for the first time during the race.

Race Sign-in:

Pick up your number and goodie bag
Go to body marking
Go to bike inspection
Go to the transition area (remember, only participants are allowed into the gated corral area. No support crew is allowed.

Setting up your transition area:

  • Rack and secure bike.
  • Place a bath towel on the ground parallel to your bike.
  • Pin race number to race belt and lay on top of running shoes. You can also pin your race number to your shirt or shorts, if you are wearing.
  • Make sure that the tongue of your shoes and laces are open. Use lace locks if possible. They really save time and work well.
  • Place bike shoes on the towel directly behind running shoes
  • Loosen straps and ensure they're open enough to get foot in... place socks on top.
  • Lay energy gels on towel and decide when you want to take them – after swim? During or after bike? During run?
  • Leave a portion of the towel to the rear of the bike open to stand on to get most debris off your feet.
  • Put water bottles in cages on bike and/or attach aero-bar water bottle.
  • Place helmet on aero bars or bike and put sunglasses inside.
  • Place shirt on top of bike seat, if wearing.
  • Reset bike computer and running watch.
  • Make sure your bike is in the right gear. Small chain-ring in the front and in a gear you can easily push out of the transition area.
  • Run through everything in your head to make sure you haven't forgotten anything.

Keep drinking (not too much now)
Go potty multiple times

Check out surroundings:

Swim course
Where do you enter transition area from swim to find your bike?
Where do you exit on your bike?
Where do you enter transition area on bike in relation to your bike?
Where do you exit for the run?
Finish line? — Yeah!

Key: Memorize where you bike is in the transition area. Count how many bike racks from where you will enter for each transition. Bring a flag or lawn ornament to hang above your bike, if you'd like. Things will look different during the race than when you set up your bike up.

Attend the race briefing
If you are new, then the race briefing is essential. It tells you what to expect during the race, the small changes that may have occurred. It also goes over the courses again — which can be confusing especially if more than one distance is being run simultaneously.

Take some time for yourself before race start;
Check your equipment one last time. Go potty again. Walk from the swim finish to the transition entrance to you bike. Walk from your bike to the bike transition exit. Walk from your bike to the run exit. Visualize yourself crossing the finish line!

Enjoy the experience!
Deb Ernst - In Competition Sports