Preparation for a race or event can have many facets. Some preparation should have started months in advance and some takes place the morning of the event. The trick to it all is finding the type and extent of preparation that works best for you. This takes practice, practice, practice and should be done each and every day leading up to the event.
Each time a workout is started, your equipment should be inspected to ensure a successful workout. On a daily basis, plan out the timing of meals and workouts. Follow a checklist to make sure there is adequate fuel in the system and onboard to replenish the body. Hone this list as you learn more about what works best for the exercise.
Training and the adaptation one seeks from progressive increases in intensity and duration in a workout has many levels of preparation. Bare bones of it, this means not doing the same thing day in day out for exercise, mix it up, and keep the body guessing what’s coming next. Periodization is the term used to describe how workouts can be different from each other with the same end goal of improvement. This allows for workouts consisting of recovery (low intensity), intervals (high intensity) and lend to specificity, or being specific to the desired adaptation. To get better at hill climbs the exercise should include climbing hills.
Inspect the equipment you plan to use for the event at least a week prior to the event. The day before the event should just be finalizing an action plan for the next day including everything from the travel to the venue, food intake, and goals to achieve during the event or race. Know the plan, live the plan and this preparation will get you your goals.
“Be satisfied with your preparation and try not to beat yourself up before you race. Whatever comes of it, at least you’ll be getting a great training session.”
This quote by Susan DeMattei (Mountain bike hall of famer) sums up the attitude for participating in an event or race. The simple fact that preparation will get you much closer to your goals and still allow for a great training effect is often forgotten after the event has passed.