A Look at My Race Mornings

My pre-race morning is nothing clever, interesting or exciting and to be honest; I like it that way.  Race mornings are better off boring and uneventful.  I received a few questions about what a “typical” race morning looks like for me so I thought I would share!

I like to wake up between 2-3 hours before a race.  My optimal race time is between 8:30-9, but I’m not a race director and don’t get too choose.  This usually means I wake up around 5:30.  I normally don’t have an issue waking up that early.

I get out of bed, brush my teeth, fix breakfast and coffee. Proper hygiene is a must for life, not just racing…

I drink 16 ounces of coffee.  I homebrew it.  There was a time my stomach didn’t react well to coffee, but lately, it seems to be fine.  I don’t drink coffee before regular runs, just races.

My breakfast consists of coffee and a waffle with peanut butter

My waffle recipe (for 1):
2/3 cup flour
1 cup water
1 egg
1tsp baking powder

A homemade waffle.
A homemade waffle.

I hesitate to call it a recipe.  I mix the batter together and pour on the waffle iron.  I top with peanut butter and eat.  It’s worked well for the past three years.

I actually eat the same breakfast every morning, whether I’m running or not.  It’s not fancy, but it’s about 600 calories of carbs, fat and a little bit of protein.

As you can see, my pre-race eating is low key and boring.  After eating and hanging out on the Internet, I head to the race.  I’m lucky most races are no more than an hour drive.

I like to get to the race start about an hour before the race.  After arriving, I pick up my bib and warm up between 3-4 miles.  The longer the race, the shorter my warm up but I do whatever feels good.  I don’t worry about pace.  Either you worry about pace during a warmup/cooldown, or you worry about pace during a race.  It’s up to you.

I like to use the bathroom about 10 minutes before the race, change into my racing flats and get a spot on the starting line.

Then I just relax, talk to whoever I see and wait for the race to start. I don’t normally get stressed before race mornings because I figure what happens, happens.  As long as I know where I’m going and don’t get lost, I’m fine.

Liz and I start

There you have it, a typical race day for me!

Click to tweet: A Typical Race Morning for @fueledbyLOLZ 

Questions for you:

What does a typical race day look like for you?

What’s your favorite breakfast?

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  1. Darn I was hoping for your secret plan that makes you so fast 😉 looks like consistent training and routine how boring lol! Seriously I love that you promote consistent training & taking care of yourself when you’re injured.

    I do need to get better about running a warm-up. In my mind I’m like “well then I’ll be slower because I’ll tire myself out” which is obviously not true.

  2. That waffle looks amazing right now!!!! I love that you pretty much keep it simple. I think sometimes people think there is a secret recipe to race day but it’s so different from one person to the next. I know that my race morning breakfast has changed A LOT over the years. Obviously what you’re doing is working big time so keep it up and thanks for sharing 🙂 Now…can you come over and make me and the boys those waffles??

  3. I think boring pre-race breakfasts are the way to go! I do an English Muffin or bagel with PB and a banana. I haven’t raced in a while so I may need to revisit my pre-race routine when I finally do…I may be clueless again 😉

  4. I love you that you eat the same breakfast whether you’re racing or not! For some reason I can’t eat peanut butter before running. I don’t know why, but it doesn’t agree with me. I love it every other time. Usually before a run I like to have a bagel with honey.

  5. Looking at how easy that waffle is makes me want to go out and get a waffle maker ASAP! Lately on race mornings I am into an Uncrustable and a banana.

  6. I always have a waffle before working out, but mine are the not-as-fancy frozen ones with almond butter and jelly. 😉 I’ll also drink a cup of coffee before before training and racing–you can’t do work if you’re still asleep, ha!

    1. It used to wreck my stomach but I think once I stopped adding too much creamer and sugar, it was much better!

  7. My typical breakfast is oatmeal (made with milk for some protein) and a banana. Oh, and coffee of course!

  8. Like you I always have the same breakfast regardless if I’m racing or not. I have porridge (oatmeal) made with goat’s milk or almond milk. And usually a black coffee. Doesn’t need to be over-complicated! I think people stress out too much with pre-race meals and timings.

  9. I was thinking about changing up my pre race breakfast to a waffle. With doing the Paleo-ish thing, I have a recipe that is made with sweet potato, which I know is good on my stomach before running. I also need coffee – can’t race without it!

    1. I would think a potato would be good before racing. I’ll be interested to hear how it goes for you Allison!

      1. I used to eat sweet potatoes before racing often. Need to get back to that. I’ve been doing a Thomas mini bagel (which I hate, so processed!), Just Great Stuff Powdered PB (good, but still a processed food) and a banana (great). I will keep you posted! I am going to

  10. I love that you’re so chill before a race 🙂 Breakfast lately for me has been a couple servings of oats with a banana, maple syrup, and either almond butter or hemp seeds. Nothing super fancy, but it gets the job done!

  11. I try to wake up 2 hours before and eat then. My typical race morning breakfast is similar to yours, usually a piece of toast with peanut butter and sometimes honey on it. 1/2 cup of coffee and some water.

  12. My race morning are boring too.
    If I work that night 11pm -730am
    I go home change or go straight to race From work.
    If I am off work I wake up about 2 hours befor race .get my race cloths togeather
    Eat, brush my teeth hygiene myself.and head to race, I pick up my bib ,stretch, and mile warm up. And try to relax.
    Food, I eat bannana or peanut butter on wheat bread,and water.

  13. I can only do coffee before a race if it’s a short distance and I have loads of time before the race. Usually fun runs only! That waffle looks great. I have been doing oatmeal lately, but I may need to go back to an English muffin.

  14. I like having a bagel, banana and a little bit of coffee before a race. I also like to keep things as simple as possible on race mornings. Looks like you have a nice routine down!

  15. I love the waffle idea! I usually do toast with peanut butter and sliced banana, but I might have to try swapping the toast with a waffle.

  16. I love how relaxed you are before a race! I definitely agree with keeping warm ups at whatever easy pace. I run mine with just the timer function on my Garmin rather than any GPS so I don’t worry about distance or pace, just getting in a few minutes to warm up the body. I like seeing these peeks into runner’s routines!

  17. I get so stressed before races! The only races I don’t stress about are distances I’ve never done before. 🙂 I don’t know how you can do any run without coffee! If I skip water or coffee I get major running hangovers.

  18. hey Hollie, thanks for sharing a waffle recipe for one. I feel so wasteful when I make a batch of batter just for me and don’t use all of it.

  19. wait will i be fast if i eat waffles too?? WAFFLES FOR EVERYONE. on a serious note thank you for sharing.

  20. That waffle looks amazing. Waffles are great things to eat pre workout, especially races

  21. Awesome routine! I too only have coffee before races and not my regular training runs. I always found that a bit odd, but I guess that just makes me cool (like you)!

  22. Totally agree with waking up early! I need a couple of hours before a long run or race to get my head right, eat, coffee (as a verb), and just be able to move slow and not rush.

  23. I love that picture of us! I really hope someday I can be an early bird like you. I used to not be able to handle coffee before races, either, but now coffee is an essential!

  24. I like the early races but as you said, we can’t pick! I get up also a few hours early so I can have coffee, water and breakfast! I always have oatmeal before a race, sometimes with banana, sometimes without banana, sometimes I bring the banana and have a piece if I start to get hungry before the race starts. I can’t run with a hungry feeling but I can’t run overly full so I play it by ear the day of.

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