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Take These Steps To Avoid Pre-Race Anxiety

Dealing With Pre-Race Anxiety

Having trouble with pre-race anxiety for days (or weeks) before a race? Let us ease your mind with these tips and bits of knowledge that’ll help you rest easy, fuel properly, get excited and run like you actually love it.

Related: Pre-Race Superstitions And Rituals We Probably All Share

Sleeping Well Two Nights Before The Race Is More Important Than The Night Before

It’s true, but don’t start freaking out if you don’t get quality sleep two nights out, either. There is plenty of research to back up this claim and one study from 2007 found that you can perform well even with several days of poor sleep.

The most important things to control are your thoughts. If you didn’t sleep well the night before a race, trust in your training and all the other great nights of sleep you had in the week leading up to race day. Think positively, read some proven studies and get out there to race hard!

Make A List Of Must-Have Race Day Items

The night before a race is not the time to start thinking about everything you’ll need. Try to assemble clothing, shoes, fuel and hydration at least 24 hours before your event, just in case you need to make a quick trip to the store or order from Amazon Prime!

Once you have all of your race day essentials, make a list or take photos of the items and keep it as a reference for your next race.

Eat And Hydrate Well Before Race Day

The better you fuel and hydrate your body, the better you will feel in the days leading up to your race. Be careful not to overdo it, cut back on fiber and don’t try anything new the night before or the morning of the race.

Have Your Mantras Ready

Most pre-race anxiety and stress is mental, not physical. You should work on your mental game in the months leading up to race day; even still, things might not go as planned, so take some time to think about what you’ll say to yourself in those moments. You’ll be glad you did!

Connect With Friends

Friends make everything better, and knowing you’re all in it together will help relax your mind. Even if you’re not running with friends, reach out to your bestie or a family member. Chances are good that they’re super impressed with what you’ve already accomplished–no matter what happens on race day.

Turn Your Nerves Into Excitement

A friend once told me, “Nervousness is excitement on pause.” That changed the way I viewed my pre-race jitters for good! Nerves are your body’s way of saying, I’m ready! Let’s do this! Try to reframe your thoughts and get excited. Everything you’ve trained for is about to be put to the test–and you are ready!

Related:
How To Prevent a Pre-Race Panic Attack

How To Stay Strong And Run Down Your Pre-Race Fear

4 Training Changes To Make Before Your Next Big Race

Allie Burdick

Allie Burdick

Allie is a freelance writer, athlete and mom, but not in that order. Her work has appeared in Runner's World, Triathlon Magazine and ESPNW. On her blog, VITA Train for Life, she chronicles her life as a runner/triathlete and hopes her successes and failures help to motivate and inspire others, even the over-40 crowd she somehow found herself in! The rest of her time is spent raising her twin boys with her husband in the Northeast where they live a big life! See it all on Twitter and Instagram.