Home  +   About  +   Races + Recaps  +   50 States  +   DIY  +   Books

Friday, May 01, 2015

Five Ways to Prepare for Race Day... While Sick

Today: The morning before my big spring race

Time for another Friday Five with with MarCynthia, and CourtneyThis week's theme: Five Things about Race Day. Perfect timing as my first long race of the season is tomorrow. Unfortunately, I'm sick and have been since Tuesday. I took off work Tuesday and Wednesday and until this morning it didn't seem like I would get better in time for tomorrow's race. I'm hopeful at the moment, but we'll see how it goes. So here's what I've learned this week about Five Ways to Prepare for Race Day... While Sick

Step 0: allow yourself one pity party, then move on!
Yes, it sucks that I've been training for weeks and I probably won't meet my A goal, but at least I'm not feverish or injured. Moving on!

Step 1: Take time off and sleep
If work allows, take time off. My office is fairly laid back and we hate when someone's sick in the office. I'm about 68% sure someone at work got me sick (or Alex), so it's always better when a sick person stays home to recover. Honestly, I didn't feel that bad on Tuesday, just icky. But man, on Wednesday I felt terrible. Sore throat, aches and pains, and lots of congestion. I took a one hour nap Tuesday and a massive three and a half hour nap Wednesday. I also went to bed at a reasonable time each night. While it was much needed, sleep alone didn't cure my ailment.

Step 2: Stay hydrated
I've been drinking a ton of Gatorade, water, and tea. I kept waking up in the middle of the night needing water and I'm sure my mouth breathing didn't help. Today I'm drinking hot water with an Airborne tablet and a giant Gatorade.

My cry for help on Facebook
Step 3: Ask for help and take the (sane) advice 
Last night I was getting desperate. I went through roughly one billion tissues and while my sore throat was going away, my nose was equal parts stuffed and runny and my body ached. I did what any desperate person would do: I asked for help on social media. Twitter wasn't helpful at all, but my Facebook friends provided a ton of feedback. 20 comments later and I had suggestions ranging from hippie cures to hardcore medicine. A sample:
  • Raw garlic cloves
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Ginger and Honey Tea
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Sudafed
  • Flonase, NeilMed Sinus Rinse, Neti pot
  • Whiskey, scotch, or Jager (ha)
Last night I chewed on cloves of garlic (not my first time... and yes, it helps a sore throat), drank ginger honey crystals in tea form (gross), and kept drinking Gatorade. It was too late to go to the pharmacy for sudafed so I took my off-brand Nyquil and suffered through another night of mouth-breathing. This morning I was able to go to Target and I bought sudafed and Airborne. I feel so much better! My nose isn't running and my head feels relatively clear. My body aches a bit, but I can deal with it.

Step 4: Mini dress rehearsal 
My Friday milage was an easy 2 miles, so I took the opportunity to use it as a mini dress rehearsal for tomorrow's race. (This was pre-sudafed and just after I got out of bed.) I wore a singlet and shorts as I plan to do tomorrow and I tried to take it slow. It was tough. By mile 1.5 I was thankful it was almost over. It wasn't a good run. I hacked up something along the way and my nose started dripping as soon as I finished. The test run clued me into a few things: I need to start slower and come prepared with tissues or a hankie. On the plus side: at least I was dressed ok for the weather!

Step 5: Let it go and adjust race goals
If I feel exactly the same tomorrow as I did on my dress rehearsal run, it's not going to be a PR day. But one thing I know for sure: I will finish. It may not be pretty. I may be dripping snot and have the aches of sickness (plus the aches of running), but at least I know I can run 13 miles. Because of this reality check, I know I need to adjust my A, B, and C goals. My Z goal is always "just finish" so at least that one can stay put.

I guess we'll see what happens tomorrow. As of right now, I'm pretty nervous, but I am a converted sudafed supporter! ;)


  1. Goodluck tmre at your race. It always stinks when you have something to look forward to and you end up getting sick. Especially a race. Just go and have fun. There will be plenty other races you can set also for.

  2. I hope you feel better. #5 is so important whether you're sick or you just don't feel right on race day. I've also eat cloves of garlic as a home remedy. It was so gross but it did the trick!

    1. The garlic recommendation blew my mind the first time, but it's helpful! :)

  3. Aw feel better! Maybe you will surprise yourself! I ended up PRing in a race when I was sick and was SO happy when my best friend surprised me with extra tissues at the end of the race haha! This is random, and I don't know if it works, BUT....I heard that putting Vics VapoRub on your feet before you go to bed (and then putting socks on) works magic. Worth a try if you still feel gross! I hope you had a fun race!

    1. I wish I could say I PR'd! I think I was convinced I might for a bit but, alas, not in the cards. I need to try the Vics thing. I've heard about it it in the past, but forgot about it until now. I'm still sick so I may need to give it a shot! :)

  4. Hope you are feeling better. This was an excellent post - I had no idea there was Ginger Honey Crystals.


I read and respond to each comment (either here or I will visit your blog.) Thank you for stopping by!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...