Today I ran the Sweet Home Milwaukee 5k down at the lakefront. My friends Kelly and Sarah also ran it and all 3 of us PR’d! How great is that? My official time was 27:57, so I am slowly ticking off those seconds. My goal is 25 minutes but I know when I make that goal it won’t be good enough and I will want to go faster! Let’s see what this body can do!
The weather today was less than spring like. It was so super cold that I could have worn my fleece lined running tights. My legs really didn’t warm up at all during the race. April weather in Wisconsin should never surprise me but I was hoping for nice, warm, dry weather nonetheless. On our way to the race it started to rain pretty good and again while we were waiting for the starting gun. A big shout out to Clock Shadow Creamery for letting us hide from the rain under their tent! Thankfully, the rain stopped but sadly the wicked wind off of the lake did not. I don’t do so great in the cold and of course I am the opposite of everyone else with MS, where I perform better in warm weather. The cold makes my muscles feel incredibly stiff and unresponsive.
This race was well organized with ample parking and was easy to get to (minus the Hoan Bridge which is under construction and in pieces right now).
I like to have stress free race mornings so one thing that I always do to prepare for races is to pack my race bag the night before. A few weeks ago I came across an interesting Pinterest idea where you keep your gym bag packed for the entire week so you have no excuse for missing a workout. I started doing just that. I keep 1 bag packed for my crossfit workouts and my race bag packed for the 5k group I mentor on Wednesdays. My racing/running bag is stocked with everything a runner could possibly need on race day. Below is what every runner needs (in my opinion).
Race belts (I have one that holds just the number and one that has a little pouch on it)
iPod shuffle (fully charged and playlist updated)
GPS watch (fully charged)
Sport and baby wipes
Alcohol wipes (ever been in a super icky port a potty? they come in handy)
Kleenx (in case the port a potty is out of toilet paper)
Dry clothes if you are hanging out at the after the race
A small workout towel
Band Aids (different sizes and types)
Lacrosse ball for working out tight muscles
Extra ear buds
A Hefty bag – you can use this for a couple of things: sitting on dew covered grass
*This list is strictly for 5k or 10k distances, if I was running longer than that I would need to add in my hydration/nutrition items.
My bag is always stocked so the night before a race all I need to do is lay out my intended outfit and attach my bib to whatever race belt I am wearing for that race. I check the weather obsessively so that I can add rain gear or a sweatshirt depending on the forecast. I don’t have problems (knock on wood) with chafing so that is why Body Glide is missing from this list, if you are a chafer you may want to add that to your race bag. What do you include in your race essentials?