What are the things you worry about before a race? Now that we both have done quite a few races there are very few things that make us worry.
However, some of the things we use to fret over were: Our hydration plan, should we or shouldn't we carry our own water? Our injuries, will it or will it not show up on race day? Our shoes, will they or will they not get us through the race comfortably? Using the restroom, will I or will I not have to go? (okay, I admit I STILL worry about this one). The weather, will it be hot and humid or will it rain? And then there are the electronic like the Garmins or the ipods that tend to misfunction once in a while. And don't forget the big one....Our time. Whether we are racing for time or just for fun, time is always in the back of our mind, is it not?
Regardless of what we do to ensure that our races go as planned, there are ALWAYS things that are out of our control. Some of them can affect your race, like the weather or an injury and some may just be a minor annoyance like the parking situation or the little bit of chaffing from a new shirt.
When thinking about a race day mishap, Virginia Beach Half Marathon in 2014 comes to mind. My sister and I shopped the expo on day one and picked up our race packets, met some friends, went to dinner, got up the next day and ran the mile on the beach. We went back to the expo for a bit and then went about our day until it was time to go to bed. As we were laying out our clothes and race gear for the half marathon the next morning Lacey noticed that her timing chip (that goes on your shoe) did not have her name on it but had the name Erica on it instead. What? She double checked her bib and her name was on the bib. How in the world did Erica's timing chip get stapled to the back of Lacey's bib? Of course it was already late and the expo was closed. We worried about how we would fix this situation and if this Erica girl checked her timing chip and noticed if it was the right one. What if she didn't notice and she ran with Lacey's chip? This had never happened to either of us before so we didn't know what to do. I know Lacey went to bed that night a little nervous and unsettled.
In the end, we did find out that there was a runner relations booth at the beginning of the race and they did take care of it. But this situation just goes to show that you have to double check your own bibs and tags. After we show our ID and get our packet, it never occurred to us that we would be given the wrong one. This situation certainly didn't ruin our race but it definitely taught us a lesson and now we are super vigilant when picking up race packets!