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Wake up, fuel, drink your coffee immediately
Three and a half hours before the gun, Wade eats something filling and easy to digest. Her favourite: a bagel (any kind except whole wheat, because the fibre makes it harder to digest) with a tablespoon of peanut butter on each side, a sliced banana on top and a drizzle of honey. Hydrate according to the 3ml rule. Worry about your bladder later, says Pappas.
Anticipate speed bumps
For larger races, allow 30 extra minutes for traffic and parking, says Lauren Ross, a 2:45 marathoner. She advises having multiple parking options. “If you’re running a new-to-you race, find a recap online,” she says. “They often mention logistical hurdles like walking to the start, gear check and toilet queues.”
Toilet, fuel again
Join the toilet queue as you arrive, Ross tips. If the queues are long, have your snack – some fruit gummies or a muesli bar – while waiting. Ross has an easy-to-digest carbohydrate with extra electrolytes, such as Honey Stinger chews.