Use running shoes that you know from experience will not give you blisters, and wear appropriate clothes for the weather. The day before your race, make sure that you look out for any advice from the race organisers, and check the weather forecasts on the TV – or you can use metcheck or bbc weather to help advise you on the coming conditions and prepare yourself accordingly.
What to do if it’s a hot day
What to do if it’s a cold day
- You should forget about achieving a PB – instead, slow down and just enjoy the experience.
- Even though it's a hot day, you should only take one drink from drink stations (see separate notes on drinking) – (a) because you don't need more; (b) you shouldn't use one to pour over your head (drink it don't wear it); (c) if everyone takes more than one drink, the drink stations will simply run out for the runners behind you – who will also be needing a drink!
- Pack waterproof sun block (don't smear loads on your forehead as you'll end up with sweaty sun block stinging your eyes). Try using some sun block on a sunny training day to find the best type for you. Waterproof sun block is best, as it won't be effected so much when you sweat.
- Wear a baseball hat. You can buy various brands of lightweight running hats – often with mesh top to keep the air flowing. The peak is ideal to keep the sun off your face, or (without trying to make a fashion statement) wear it backwards to protect the back of your neck.
- Turn up with some warm clothes that you can sensibly discard once the race has started.
- Warm your muscles up before stretching them. Think of your muscles like putty: if it's cold they can be quite brittle, but once they're warm they are very pliable.
- You may want to wear some warmer clothing – ideally something that you can take off once you start to heat up, such as a hat and gloves.
- Start the race slowly and let your muscles warm to the task ahead.
- Once you finish make sure you have some warm clothes to change into ASAP.