TIPS FOR GETTING READY FOR THE BIG DAY Do you have a routine for getting race day ready? Here's an in depth look into the things you need to be doing to prepare yourself for race.
I Used To Make Myself Crazy
over an important track meet! At times, I would get so inside my head that it would affect my performance. There were so many things that caused the anxiety. My eating and sleeping habits the week before. My shake out over the last 48 hours. Where the meet was being held! Literally everything, and I would think about this at all the wrong times.
After years of training me my coach finally knew me well enough to know what would really trigger me. We developed a method to calm myself before competition and helped me to clear my mind of all the negative, self doubting thoughts.
I've found that one of the hardest things to do as an athlete is learn how to prepare yourself for competition. There's so many variables to consider when prepping for game day. But there is hope! I've got some great tips for you to help you prep for your next big competition.
It's important to stay relaxed yet focused on the competition. Mental preparation begins long before you get to the track, field or court. Sometimes I'd begin mentally preparing for competition an entire month prior. Finding the right time to start your mental prep really depends on you and when your competition anxiety kicks in.
Visualization is the most important thing you can do to calm your nerves. I like to sit in a quiet comfortable space to visualize myself on game day. I go through the entire day from waking up and the ride to the meet to my warm up and start of competition Visualizing these moments helps to prepare you and makes the anxiety more manageable when you face it in real life.
Physical competition prep begins about 2 weeks prior to the big day. This is the time to start scaling back on the intensity of your workouts and really focus your energy on feeling fresh. You do this by making sure you're getting plenty of sleep, carb loading (we'll talk more about this soon), and focusing your trainings on technical work.
There are a lot of myths surrounding carb loading. They stem from the common understanding of carbohydrates. YOU SHOULD NOT eat a bunch of pasta the night before a competition. Carbs are fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Instead of pasta, aim to increase your dark leafy green intake. This can help your muscles utilize oxygen which in turn causes you to experience less fatigue.