Run Garioch’s Tips for a Successful Race
Proper nutrition, hydration and recovery are all essential to a runner’s performance no matter what distance they’re racing, how fast they run or how much experience they have.
Unfortunately, all three can be overlooked when planning for an event as physical training often takes the spotlight.
But make no mistake: neglecting these areas could add minutes to your race time or delay your recovery.
Don’t put in all that hard work training and see it go to waste because of an easily controlled factor impairing your performance. Follow our basic tips to maximise your performance at Run Garioch – and in all your runs and races to come.
Creating a nutrition plan in the build-up to race day can help optimise last-minute training gains and set you up on the correct path for a successful race.
A runner’s diet should be loaded with sources of carbohydrates, proteins and iron, which are all fundamental nutrients the body relies on when racing.
Some other tips:
- Carb load: eat a carbohydrate-heavy meal the night before your race to supply your muscles with their primary fuel source.
- Only consume light and easily digested food on race day to avoid unwanted digestive distress: bananas, eggs and toast are good options.
- Drink a large cup of coffee one hour before starting the race: caffeine will increase your focus and endurance.
Sweating is inevitable during a race. Depending on environmental conditions, a runner can lose between 0.5L and 1.8L of body fluid per hour. Without adequate care taken to maintain hydration levels, dehydration will quickly occur.
- Hydrate before the race begins: drink 5–7ml per kg of body weight four hours before the race.
- You can estimate your own fluid loss by weighing yourself before and after a training session. A reduction of 1kg equates to a loss of 1L of fluid.
- Make full use of the water stations provided by Fisher Offshore around the eGroup Half Marathon and Dandara 10k courses to maintain hydration levels throughout the race.
Recovery doesn't just start after the race.
- Rest up for 48 hours prior to race day: this will allow your body to recover fully from training and prepare for the challenge ahead.
- Consider investing in compression clothing which can help reduce fatigue, muscle soreness and swelling.
- After your race visit the RGU:Wellness tent for a massage to release tension and treat small soft-tissue injuries.
- Try active recovery by taking a short walk or cycle the next day to reduce joint stiffness.
- Use a foam roller to soothe muscle tension and trigger points within the body.
Garioch Sports Centre
There are several classes available at the Garioch Sports Centre to support your running and take your training to the next level. These include Spinning, BodyPump, BodyBalance, Kettlebells, Boxercise, Metafit and BodyAttack. Please ask for a timetable at Reception or download one here.
The GSC also has a state-of-the-art gym, featuring:
- 6 treadmills
- 4 cross-trainers
- Spin bikes
- Fixed and free weights
- Swiss balls and kettlebells
If you're interested in using the gym and haven't done so before, please ask at Reception, or telephone 01467 626141 to book an induction with one of their trainers.
Top training tips
- Training in old, worn out or improperly fitted shoes can lead to injuries and prevent you from running at your best. If you’re going to invest in your performance, correct footwear is the place to start. Drop in to Run Garioch's retail partner Run4it (21 Holburn St Aberdeen, AB10 6BS) for a free gait analysis and loads of expert advice.
- After each training session try to eat a meal rich in carbohydrates and proteins to replenish energy supplies and repair damaged muscles.
- Fluid is lost through sweat during training, so it's vital to replace it to prevent dehydration and keep you running at your best. Weigh yourself before and after a training session to estimate fluid loss: 1kg weight loss = 1L of lost fluid
- Don’t run a route to death: avoid boredom and change up the scenery by trying out new routes. Better yet, join a club or running group. The Garioch Gazelles, Garioch Roadrunners, jobscotland Kintore and jogscotland Meldrum all train in the area and welcome new members year round.
- Try a new activity such as cycling or swimming to supplement running.
- Don’t try to train through an injury: it will only make things worse and may put you off running for good. Rest, recover and try an activity that doesn’t use the injured area.