Race Week Preparation

Take it easy. This is not the time to start training with long, hard runs and rides. Tapering is hard to do, but reduce your volume by about 30%. On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday before the race, do some nice steady, fairly short rides and runs. Take Thursday off for a Saturday race altogether. The day before your race, exercise enough to break a sweat and stay loose.

Schedule early bed times for the entire week. It's always hard to sleep the night before, but one night's deficit will not hurt much. One week of less than ideal sleep will.

Do not skip meals race week, and hydrate, hydrate, hydrate throughout the week. Don't eat a late-night meal the night before the race.

Equipment Check
Have a system you can use for all races. Start with the equipment you will use first in the race and work through to the equipment that you will use last.

Check your goggles: Are they leaking and do they suck? If the lens is scratched consider a new pair for racing and keep the old pair for the pool and as a back up pair.

Check your wetsuit: Look for any potential tears; look at the seams for any split or frays.

Check your bike: There is a lot to check here so if you don't know what to do, bring it to a bike shop and ask them to help you learn what to look for. Bike stores are more than happy to teach you how to check your bike for safety.

At least 2 days before pump tires and check your tires for any cuts through the canvas. Look at the sidewalls of the tire. See if you are losing any air over the next few days. You may want to replace tubes if you are.

Check your helmet: Adjust the straps and make sure it fits firmly. Make sure there are no cracks or dents.

Check your running shoes: Add lace locks and practice using them. Obviously you're not going to replacement them the night before, so be conscious how many miles you have on them and when you're due for a new pair.

The night before:
Pack your stuff. Lay out your transition area on your bed the night before to ensure you have everything. Pack in a big duffle bag to be able to lug to the transition area.

Make a list of your strengths and why you are doing this. Plan and visualize your race morning and transitions in your head before falling asleep — hopefully you do.