"Five Tips For Success" From B.A.A. Coach Terry Shea
Terry Shea, assistant coach to the B.A.A. Club Team, with his tips for a successful lead up to race day:
• Taper - In the next few days, ease back on the miles you run. This will give you a bit of extra energy for Sunday's race.
• Hydrate - Especially with the weather heating up, drink lots of water between now and race day. Though race morning temperatures look to be comfortable, you still want to drink and take in some water and electrolytes.
• Prepare - Pack your race day bag the night before, making sure you have everything you need. Remember your bib number, shoes, dry clothes, and maybe a snack or two. You also want to leave plenty of time to travel into Boston, as you never know when delays will pop up.
• Break the Race Up - It is always easier if you look at a race in sections. Maybe break it into three, two mile stretches. Or you can try looking at it as a four-mile tempo run, then a two mile race. Once you get through a section or two, it will feel that much easier to keep pushing on. Sometimes this helps you pick the pace up in the latter sections!
• Don't Stress - Let these next few days be fun, as you've worked very hard to get to the starting line. During the race, enjoy the atmosphere and camaraderie. When you cross the finish line, take a moment to embrace the crowd and reflect on how it feels to accomplish a 10K. Enjoy the experience out there.
2011 Boston Marathon runner-up and 2012 Olympian Desiree Davila of the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project:
• Pace - Don’t go out too hard, it will hurt you in the second half of the race.
• Pace, again - That’s my big one, to not go out too hard. I can’t say that enough. Know your fitness level, too.
• Plan Ahead - Know where everything is at before the start. Know where the porta-johns are, make sure you have all of your stuff packed the night before, so you are not stressing when you get there, because that is the last thing you want.
• Have Fun - That is definitely most important!
2011 B.A.A. Half Marathon winner and B.A.A. Distance Medley competitor Janet Cherobon-Bawcom:
• Goal Setting - Choose a definition of "success" that you can realistically meet. Don't set yourself up for disappointment by getting in over your head or by setting goals that aren't supported by the training you're doing.
• Mileage - Be gradual and patient when increasing intensity or volume. It took me 5 years to get from 50 miles a week to 100 miles a week, but I continued improving and I stayed healthy and had fun.
• Do More Than Just Running - Supplement running with strength and core work. In 2009 we moved to a new house that was across the street from a gym. I started going to core and strength classes there, and it has made a huge difference in my running. I haven't gotten that much faster, but I can race more often and without the aches and pains I used to have.
• The Long Run - Do it! I really think that this is one thing I do differently from some other runners. I do marathon type long runs all year round, no matter what distance I'm training for, and I think this keeps me healthy when I'm racing often. I like to approach my long run as a sort of active stretch - something that works out the sore spots and keeps me ready for the last mile of any race.
• Have Fun - This is the only thing that has kept me going. I enjoy racing in new places, making new friends, and trying things like new distances or courses. Find what makes running fun for you and keep that in mind when making plans.
Four-time Boston Marathon champion and 1976 Olympian Bill Rodgers:
• The More Support You Get, The Better You Can Do - If you can have some friends or a training partner out on the course, either running or cheering, that gives you so much strength mentally. That can give you the extra edge you need. When you run the race, make sure to look out for all of those cheering you on.
• It’s Good To Start Slow - If you start the race slow, its always a great strategy. If you watch most of the big race winners, usually they are a little back at the start. Run you pace, and think of the race as a training run. You can always pick the pace up in the later miles.
• Have Fun - The number one thing is to think of how much of a celebration the sport is. Think of what you are doing and how you’ve changed through the sport. There are many amazing people out there in the sport.
• Be Flexible - Be flexible with your training plan. When you are down, let your body recover. I think resting is probably the number one part of training that is not followed by all of us, including the top runners. But make sure to acclimate and adjust to the weather.
• Love Your Shoes - Make sure you love your shoes, just like the Ruby Slippers in the Wizard of Oz. You really want shoes where you feel you can say, “I can run in these.” If they throw you off then you will get blisters. You want to make sure to find the right shoes that work for you.