Runners, and athletes in general, are known for being supertitious. Whether it’s replicating whatever we did before a particularly successful performance, or on the flipside, avoiding anything we did before or during a crap one, I’m sure everyone has at least one little ‘thing’!
I have a few myself, but I also asked some of my Facebook friends to share some of theirs!
Dave – “I have a post parkrun traditional breakfast of eggs Benedict, but only if I get a PB.”
Ruth – “Never wear the event tshirt to the event.”
Rachel – “My husband has the same undies for every cricket game…..although they hardly looks like jocks now…more like rags! He also always put his left shoe on first.”
Tina – “Never run in the event top until you’ve completed the event. I always put my left sock on first, then right sock, left shoe then right shoe.”
Rob – “Cut bandaid in half the night before coz I can never find the scissors in the dark? Why half a bandaid…? Coz using two seems a tad excessive for manly nipples.”
Sputnik – “I always wear my undies UNDER my shorts instead of over the top. Except this one time when it was really early and i got dressed in the dark.
Early on, I used to only ever run in TWO pairs of socks. One super thin pair, with a regular pair over the top. That was an actual thing. I have no idea why.
Like many other, I almost never wear an event Tee also. But only because they are almost always universally shit. I am superstitious against silhouettes of runners.”
Karen – “I always wear new socks to any race over 10km. They have to be brand new, never washed and never worn before. I use Thorlo for trails and 2XU for roads and they have never let me down. Nice undies a must and a visit to essential beauty for a big ultra. Tis all about being dressed for the emergency dept. just in case”
Sonya – “Ditto the underwear (when worn) and I try my best to wear all garments the conventional way out…it’s a getting dressed early in the morning and mostly in the dark thing. Oh, and never wear anything new on race day. That’s bad shit.”
Tania – “Just of late I’ve soaked in a bath before a run and never drink alcohol the night before”
So what about me? It started when I used to play soccer. In my first season, when my team was winless, I used to eat my regular breakfast of Weetbix and milk before a game. Then one day, after a particularly heavy night involving tequila and not remembering a lot other than getting kicked out of a pub, I couldn’t face breakfast before leaving the house for my game. On the way there I thought ‘I have to eat SOMETHING’, and like a beacon in a thick fog, there were the Golden Arches! Bacon and Egg McMuffin it was. And lo and behold not only did I have my best game for the season, WE WON! As it turned out it was our only win for the season, and I credited it all to that Bacon and Egg McMuffin. For the next 3 seasons, I had to have one before every game. We didn’t win them all of course, and I didn’t play well every week, but the tradition stuck until I went vego at the end of 2012. In 2013 I made my own pre-game scrambled egg muffin (much cheaper… and healthier) and in 2014 when I started to try the vegan pathway, I went back to cereal and non-dairy milk.
And now to running. Once I was tossing up between 2 skirts for a race, and I discounted one because I had had a particularly shit race last time I’d worn it (not that the skirt was in any way responsible… and the one I chose was identical, just a different colour!)
I do like new socks for a big race but I always run in them once, and only once, before the big day. I agree with others who say never try something new in a race.
I am attached to shoes. I have 2 pairs that I will probably never run in again but I can’t bring myself to get rid of them because of what they have done. One is my first pair of Brooks which got me through my first marathon. The other is the pair that not only took me to a then-PB at the Barossa Marathon but also my first ‘ultra’ – 60km in the Adelaide 6 hour.
Marathon eve dinner is always pizza and cider. Like the Bacon and Egg McMuffin tradition, it began before my first marathon in Liverpool. I had tried this particular pizza (Pizza Express, from memory) one night the previous week in London, and loved it. (It was actually a vegan pizza but that is not essential… my pre-Gold Coast Marathon pizza was cheesy as, and I got a PB there!) I had a great run, better than expected, in Liverpool, so pizza and cider became my meal of choice!
That is all I can think of for now, but I’m sure over the years there will be more!