Pre-race jitters are bound to happen, calm them with our advice
Whether you’re an experienced athlete or brand new to the sport, pre-race jitters affect all athletes. Don’t worry, this is normal! You’re excited, chatting with old friends and making new ones, scurrying to make your transition perfect, anxious to get in the water, checking off items on your to-do list. You’ve trained for this moment and want everything to go as smoothly as possible. So do we! That’s why we’ve compiled a list of six tactics you can use to calm those pre-race jitters.
Plan race morning the night before
Take the time to plan out race morning when you’re not in a rush to beat the traffic to get Downtown. Follow this general advice and make race morning as smooth as possible! Completing this the day before ensures you have all the time you need. Start with leaving your house and layout everything you’ll need to return home with your CapTex Tri medal! Think about transition, the swim, the bike, the run. Items to focus on: race bib, wristband, hydration, and nutrition. If you’re a visual person, make a list and check it twice.
Remember your training
You’ve spent hours in the pool, logged miles on the bike, completed several brick workouts. You’re ready for this! It can be easy to think about what’s ahead, but it’s just as easy to think about what you’ve accomplished so far. If you have a game plan, go over that in your head. Focus on your breathing, make it mimic when you’re in the water. Think about your technique in the water. Look for items to focus on when you sight. If you had a particularly good bike ride, think about what went right on that ride.
Listen to music
This is used by many triathletes! You could jam out to the tunes playing on course or you could throw some headphones on and click play on your favorite album. You can’t use headphones during the race, so if you want a song to get stuck in your head make sure it’s one of the final songs you hear. Pro tip: if you find yourself with some extra time, find a quiet spot to sit down, listen to some tunes, close your eyes, and relax.
Complete the pre-race warmup
Remove pre-race jitters by actually getting your blood flowing! Get with a group of athletes, or complete your own pre-race warm-up. You’ll get loose and start to feel good. Really focus on the activity you’re doing, make your form as perfect as possible. Zeroing in on what you’re doing keeps you from thinking about all the what-ifs that lead to pre-race jitters. Pro tip: add a deep stretch after the warmup to further loosen your muscles.
Get a friend to complete CapTex with you
Has someone trained with you and showed you the ropes? Great! Have them join you in Downtown, ATX for CapTex Tri! Having someone you know with you race morning brings familiarity. You’re more likely to be comfortable when they’re around. They can help you remember this pre-race jitters list! You could also talk about where you’ll celebrate and what you’ll eat/drink when you leave the finish line party.
Invite friends and family to cheer for you
This is our favorite remedy for pre-race jitters. They don’t have to complete CapTex Tri, but invite friends and family to join you Downtown so they can cheer for you! They can make signs, take photos/video, and cheer for you at several different locations, including swim start, transition, and the finish line. Pro tip: you can hang out with friends and family before your swim wave begins.