A few weeks ago I ran my first destination race–the NYC Half Marathon. I am pretty pleased with how everything went, and want to take note of a few things I did right and a few I might do differently next time–since I already know there will be a next time! I hope these lessons from my first destination race are helpful, and would love to hear your tips for destination racing.
1. Make Travel Plans Early. I made my hotel reservations as soon as I found out I had gotten into the race, and wish I’d made my train reservations earlier. Since there is no lottery for the Denver Colfax Urban 10 Miler, I checked airfare before registering and booked the race hotel right away.
2. Start Packing Early. I started assembling my NYC race gear right after I ran my first race of the year–while race day essentials were still fresh in my mind. That approach worked because I didn’t forget a single thing!
NYc Half race gear ready to go
3. Pack Options For Race Day. I drove myself crazy stalking the race weekend weather forecast and ended up packing two full outfits for race day–with lighter/heavier options from head to toe. The weather should be more predictable in Denver in May, but I still will pack options in case I change my mind.
4. Bring Fuel From Home. Following the “nothing new on race day” rule is essential when it comes to race fuel. I packed a tube of Nuun tablets to add to my water bottle on race day, and a few packages of peanut butter crackers for my pre-race breakfast and post-race tummy-settling. But I won’t be bringing Shot Blocks again!
my broken crown 🙁
5. Check Out The Race Area. I was familiar with the Central Park portion of the NYC half course, but had never been to Wall Street. On race day, I was really glad we had spent some time the day before walking around the finish area and picking a meet-up place.
**Don’t Hold Out For Post-Race Brunch** I seem to be able to avoid post-race GI issues if I eat something right away–like a banana and/or bagel. Between my broken crown and wanting to maximize our time in NYC, I didn’t eat anything until we had made it back to our hotel. My stomach complained, and we had to nix our plans for one last meal in NYC–although my husband was brave enough to try the food truck outside our hotel. If there’s even a chance of going to brunch after my next destination race, I will need to eat something from the post-race goodie bag on the way back to the hotel.
What are your tips for destination // racecation racing?