The annual springtime Bucks 5K Series season is upon us! This includes 7 race options for local runners, racers, and rookies. 5K races are great events that bring people together whether it’s the running or the cause.
In preparation for the 5K Cornerstone, on Saturday April 22, which also includes a 2-mile Health Walk and 1 Mile Fun Run, we’ve put together some tips to help you plan for this type of event. Don’t worry about performing well. Simply relax, control your breathing, and enjoy the day.
Hydration is essential.
Focus on drinking water at least two days before the race. Drinking water the day of is not enough time to hydrate because your body will excrete a good portion of the fluids you just ingested. Excretion of excess water begins about 30 minutes and peaks 1 hour after it has been ingested. There is no need to drink gallons of water, simply keep up with regular hydration to be consistent for race time.
On the morning of the race, don’t change your pre-run eating habits.
Now is not the time to try something new for your stomach. Stick to foods and pre-race routines that your body is already comfortable and familiar with digesting.
Check the weather.
Temperatures may fluctuate throughout the day, so look at the temperature of when you will arrive, check in, and warm up in addition to race time. Bring layers that are easy to take off and potentially tie around your waist or tuck into your waist band.
Wear clothes that have a pocket for your essentials like car keys.
During the race you’re going to want to put your extra layers, water, etc. someplace while you’re running. It’s easiest to put your belongings in the car or with a friend who is not in the race.
Do not run in a brand new pair of shoes for the first time on race day.
Even if they are the same shoe make, new shoes that have not been worn-in will rub your feet differently. This can cause blisters and sore spots which are temporary, but painful. New shoes that are not the same may influence your stride and foot strike potentially causing more long term effects. Work-in new shoes when you are able to stop if needed.
Bring a watch.
A lot of races have timer tags on the race bibs to clock each individual runner but if the crowd is large, it may take a few minutes to cross the starting line. Start your watch when you begin the course and check your watch for overall time and mile splits during the race to help yourself pace. This allows you to run your race instead of getting caught up in the crowd.
If you know you are going to walk, do not start right at the front.
Faster runners should start more towards the front of the crowd. This helps the flow of runners at the start of the race because the faster runners can break out at their desired pace. Joggers and walkers should start where they feel comfortable.
Do not stop directly after the finish line.
More people will be coming across the finish line faster than people are moving behind it. Keep walking and find your way to refreshments and congratulate yourself! You just finished the race!
The 5K Cornerstone, Health Walk and Fun Run will benefit Friends of the Heart Institute of the Doylestown Health, and will be held at The Health and Wellness Center, 847 Easton Road, in Warrington. Click here for registration info.
For more information, contact Cornerstone’s Membership Advisors or Wellness Coaches, who can also help with how to prep for a 5K, especially if it’s your first time.