Dealing With Pre-Race Jitters


Many runners get anxious because they are afraid that they are going to forget something important. Have a checklist before you leave home with what you need. Type out a checklist, laminate it and actually check it off as you pack. Include everything – shoes, socks, anything that you may need. Even though it may be the middle of summer, I’ll still pack a lightweight pair of tights and a long sleeve shirt. You never know when the weather may turn. Be prepared for anything.

Sometimes your nervousness before a race is because you are afraid of the unknown. A good way to get over this is to be prepared for the race at hand. Get there early and get a map of the race course. Drive over it so that you will know where all the turns, hills, and finish line are located. Familiarity with the course will help you in this area.

Make sure that you get everything ready for race day the night before. I check a weather app to see what the weather will be hourly at the start and during the race so I’ll know what to wear. Then, lay out what you want to wear and pin your racing bib to the front of your shirt. Have your shoes and socks ready and if the race uses a timing chip – get it attached. Having everything ready before you go to bed causes you to be less anxious on race morning.

Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Many runners get overly stressed out because they feel that they need to run a certain time. Just have the attitude that you are going to run your best and take that weight off of your shoulders.

You’ve trained hard for your race. You know that you are ready. Follow these tips and let the excitement of race day carry you to a wonderful day.