Last Minute Ottawa Race Weekend Tips for Marathoners

This will be a short and sweet list, mostly because there’s all sorts of good stuff to do today in Ottawa. Here’s my last minute tips for all you marathon runners:

  • Stay off your feet (as much as possible) – tough, I know. Try to keep the walking to a minimum today. Avoid things like the Parliament Buildings tour, or wandering the Byward Market (been there, done that, paid for it in the 2010 Ottawa Marathon). Your legs and feet will thank you tomorrow.
  • Eat all the carbs – plan out your meals and snacks to be carb-heavy. You don’t have to have pasta for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but don’t shy away from grabbing an extra slice of toast, or that yummy fudge brownie. It’s all good today.
  • Get your race-day stuff together early – do this in the daytime instead of waiting until just before bed. The reason? You might discover you forgot something and it’s far easier to pick up a pair of socks, or you favourite energy drink while the expo is still open.
  • Don’t wear the race shirt in the race – I mean, you can if you want (who am I to judge?). But you never know with a new shirt whether it’ll cause some chafing or other issues. Stick with what you know.
  • Go get some sunscreen – you have some right? If not, go get some because the forecast suggests you’ll need it tomorrow.
  • Study the route some more – grab the course map and memorize some key points (my virtual sightseeing tour might help) to help you break up the marathon into mentally manageable chunks. It could be a museum, or specific intersection, or whatever. Also plan out where your family and friends will be cheering you on so you can be on the right side of the road so as not to miss them.
  • Get out and cheer – the 2k, 5km and 10k races this evening are super exciting and worth checking out. Some of the best runners in the world will be featured in the Ottawa 10k which starts at 6:30pm tonight. Come down to the start and finish and cheer them on.

It’s going to be a great weekend and your race is just one part of it. Getting out and checking out the expo, or hitting the evening races will help take your mind off your race tomorrow for a bit. Enjoy the day!

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