Spartan racing and the world of OCR in general is made all the better by the people involved. Sharing racing tips and advice from experience is what brings the community together and gets everyone pushing for their best.
Team Myzone athlete and a regular on the Spartan podium, Luke De-Benedictis gives us an insight into how anyone can perform better, with his tips for Spartan success at any distance.
Make sure you’re hydrating enough and also maybe focus on eating more carbohydrates so your body can stores these as glycogen ready for race day.
I don't eat much before a race but this will be different for others. It’s mainly a banana or bagel in the morning and then my energy drink pre-race.
In the final few days before an event, being rested is great but you don't want to stop doing anything in the lead up to a race. Generally, I’ll have a harder run session maybe 4-5 days before a race and then keep an easy run, or easy bike sessions in with my training. Then I’ll focus on more OCR technique sessions in the lead up to race day, such as monkey bars or rope climbs, just to get sharp for the race.
I wouldn't try anything new on race day. The best way is to test out your gels or bar on long runs in training so that you can judge what's before you and how much fuel you might need for the race.
Tips for Spartan race day
Trail or OCR trainers are a must. I like to wear race kit that's compression or fitting, just so it doesn't get caught on any of the obstacles. With my Myzone Switch, I generally wear this on my bicep for OCR events, as I find it to be a good position that doesn't get uncomfortable when moving through obstacles.
For a warm up… An easy run maybe something like 1-2k just to get the legs moving and then finish with some faster sprints or strides, also look at getting some bounds and plyometric movements in to get the body ready for the jumping and climbing ahead.
Nutrition on the course would depend on the distance. For a Sprint I wouldn't take anything with me but depending on the Super, maybe one gel. Or, if it's a Beast distance race, I’d look at two or three gels. If it's hot then always remember hydration.
A spare change of clothes and a muddy/wet kit bag is a must for post-race. Also, have some food in the bag for after or money for to get some as you'll be super hungry after all those obstacles.
Have fun and enjoy it if you're an Elite or Open waver, it's always a great day and the Spartan community is an amazing one!