This tip is brought to you by Lindsay Webster. Lindsay is a 4X OCR World Champion, among other things. She knows how to race...
She can be found in the mountains, in her garden, or online.
And now, take it away Lindsay:
I'll share my pre-race warm up routine - I begin this routine about 15 minutes before my start time.
The thing about warm-ups is you want to get to the start line feeling... your heart rate elevated and starting to sweat a little.
I start with a 15min easy jog. It's hard to get the fire burning at the awful hour of 7am when we have to be on the start line, and this helps my body wake up a little.
Once I feel warmed up, I start incorporating some 1 minute pickups at race pace. I'll do about three of those. Then I usually head back to my bag, take off a bunch of layers, grab my race gels or whatever I need, then finish my warm up.
I'll do one more pickup, again 1 minute, but this time above race pace. Think more like start line pace, when the gun first goes off and the whole field struggles to keep up to Nicole Mericle for the first 1.5km! If I'm getting sweaty and feel like my muscles are ready to run fast, then I'll head to the start line. If I feel like I need another few 30 second pickups at this pace, I'll tack those on too.
The thing about warm-ups is you want to get to the start line feeling like this - not taxed or tired, but with your heart rate elevated and starting to sweat a little. That means you're ready to run hard! But don't do so much that you tire yourself out and are using up your race energy.
After that, I'll head to the start line and do some stretches. This is usually about 5 minutes before they call us in to the gate. Calves, some leg swings which also stretch my hamstrings, hip flexors, and quads. Take a few deep breaths to calm the nerves, smile and enjoy the moment, and you're ready to race!