Race Day Prep: What to do the Day/Night Before an Event

Posted by on Nov 4, 2012 in Featured, Race Day, Running | 2 Comments

I am an organized person. A planner, if you will. I am definitely not one of those people who can simply wake up the morning of a race, throw on my shoes, and head to the starting line. The mere thought of that gives me the heebie jeebies. Doing something like that makes me more than anxious and therefore, my performance suffers big time. Being organized allows me to think clearly and feel relaxed. With a calm mind and a relaxed body, I am more than ready to race. I know I can’t be the only runner out there who thrives off of structure and therefore, I thought it might be helpful to share what I do the day/night before an event to get ready and organized.

1. Know exactly how to get to the race site. Races start early and you usually need to be there at least an hour before the gun goes off. What does that mean? It’s dark when you’re trying to get there. Trying to follow directions and looking for a new place in the dark can be stressful. Now, if you have ran this particular race before and know how to get there, well, you don’t need to sweat this one. However, if you are running a race you have never run, it would be wise to practice how to get there the day before. That way, there is no guessing in the morning.


2. Get your gear ready. This is my biggest one. I have a pretty big fear of forgetting one essential piece of gear, like, oh I don’t know, my left shoe or something (I’m kidding?). I lay it all out the night before so that I can see it in all its glory. That way, there is no searching for things at 5am. For example, I’m running the The Turkey and Taturs 10k Trail Race tomorrow morning. I’ve got the following things laid out and ready to go: running tights, underarmour long sleeve shirt, ICEdot singlet, sports bra, socks, shoes, gloves, bib with safety pins, Garmin, iPod, and ICEdot band. Also, make sure everything is charged/charging…Garmin, iPod, etc.


3. Get your fuel ready. This includes both pre-race fuel (breakfast) and mid-race fuel (gu, shotblocks, etc.) I always prepare my breakfast the night before so that I can grab and go. My pre-race meal is usually some type of carb paired with nut butter. For tomorrow, I’ve got a whole wheat english muffin topped with peanut butter sitting pretty in my fridge right now. You cannot run your best without proper fuel. This is a biggie and you can’t skip it!

These are the tips and tricks that have worked for me and my organizational purposes. Everyone moves to the beat of their own drum and you gotta figure out what works best for you. I’m sure many of your are more of the wing it type (I’m jealous) and don’t feel the need to get things prepped. Some of you may be like me and feel the need for structure. To each their own :) As always, I hope you found this helpful. Run strong!

What do you do the day/night before the race? Incredibly organized or more laid back?






The ICEdot Crash Sensor attaches to a helmet and notifies emergency contacts of a crash and your location. Buy Yours at ICEdot.org.


  1. Travis Owens
    November 4, 2012

    I too get my gear ready the night before, it does not matter if it is a 5k or an ultra. When you travel overnight for some events it becomes second nature.
    Good luck and have fun out there!

  2. Ginger Spansel
    November 8, 2012

    We’d get along great on Race Morning!!!