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We are getting closer and closer to the event and you are probably wondering about your preparation for the race and how to manage your effort on the course.

Marc Darchez , professional sports coach, provides you with answers to your questions. He took part in the 1st edition of Run Mate last year and can therefore give you valuable advice, having experienced the race himself!

Learn about proper nutrition for Run Mate, how to effectively prepare for a relay race, and how to manage your race with your teammates.


What nutrition before / during / after the race? How to get power between relays?

As with every race you participate in, preparation begins well in advance of the event; It’s the same for pre-race nutrition.

The week before the event, remember to hydrate well (particularly on D-3) and stock up on energy. Increase carbohydrate intake a little during the last 3 meals.

On race day, your diet will be managed differently whether you are first or last runner.

But ideally for everyone, have a complete snack or meal 3 hours before your departure. Then, make sure to hydrate well while waiting for your relay. You can have a last small snack 30' before departure.

The most important thing will happen after each of your relays.

Ideally, eat and hydrate yourself within 30 minutes of your arrival and after each of your relays. Depending on the time, this could be a piece of fruit, a slice of sports cake or an energy and/or protein bar or a starchy dish with a protein boost.

Remember to hydrate well and be sure to include mineral salts in your drinks if you are not having a salty snack.

There is no magic recipe, everyone has their own way of working: listen to your body and its needs. Take care of him because you will put a lot of strain on him for 24 hours.


What type of training should be encouraged during prep?

Difficult to answer this question because you all start Run Mate with different distance objectives and a different level.

Some prepare an ultra endurance race for the 2 and 3 relays.

Some will try to give the best of themselves in each segment and others will try to complete the distance while having as much fun as possible.

What is specific to each person and which is surely new for your body is the repetition of sustained efforts during the same day.

Except for the most trained among you, you are not used to training twice or three times a day...

During the race, you may have to complete up to 5 relays or more and your body does not yet know how to handle this new constraint at the moment.

I would therefore advise you to do at least twice, 3 running training sessions in a day, to feel the fatigue and constraints of repeated efforts.

Otherwise, your best ally will be your endurance and for this, I advise you to carry out a large volume of training at low intensity.

Your ability to manage repeated efforts will be thanks to your endurance qualities more than your speed qualities.

How many kilometers of training per week?

Big question because you probably all have a different racing program.

But I would advise you to complete, per week, at least the number of kilometers that you plan to run during Run Mate. If you do 3 relays for 30 kilometers of racing, aim for this goal over the next few weeks.


How to deal with lack of sleep?

You will not be able to avoid major bouts of fatigue during a 24-hour event, even if you will surely manage to take a few micro-naps. Your form and freshness during the event will be thanks to your preparation and management of the week before the race.

During this last week, you need to get plenty of rest to have energy to spare during your weekend. There's no secret, if you arrive on Saturday with a sleep debt, it will be difficult not to falter during the event.

At the same time between your relays, being vigilant about your diet and hydration, and anticipating your body's needs, will allow you to better recover between relays and stay fresh.

Little advice: take 15 minutes to warm up before each of your relays (joint mobilization, jogging, some acceleration).

Your body will tense and stiffen a little more after each stint, especially since you will spend a lot of time sitting in the car. This moment taken before each departure will be really important to facilitate your effort and maintain your energy throughout the event.

For night relays, wake up at least 30' before your departure and if you have slept, do a warm-up of at least 20' with a gradual increase in intensity.

How to recover between two relays?

Eat and drink within 30 minutes after your relay. Put your legs in the cool lake water. Take care of your little injuries if there are any.

Massage your legs and back with Arnica oil. If you have time, take a micro nap of 10 to 20 minutes.

What racing strategy should you adopt?

Another huge topic!

Difficult to give a global answer without knowing the composition and objective of the Team.

With a view to having fun with regular runners but not looking for performance, I advise you to choose your relays according to your qualities and your desires by keeping a regular cycle of relays. This will give you time to recover properly between each run.

If you are looking for performance, many possibilities are available to you depending on your qualities as a runner and the composition of your team. For those who are less numerous, it may be interesting to consider doubling or tripling the relays during the night to allow everyone to have more recovery time, for example. For teams of 9 looking for performance, choose relays where you can express your qualities. The fastest on short runs, the trailers on runs with D+ and the long runs for the most endurance.

Build your race plan in advance. And think about your roles when you're not running. This will represent the majority of your running time and it is not negligible!

In order to be most efficient, as many things as possible must be defined in advance.

You will have several tasks during RunMate:

  • Driver

  • Co-pilot

  • Cook

  • Runner

  • Recovery

  • Non-race challenges

It's up to you to define what your role is on each relay to waste a minimum of time.

Example: after his run the runner goes into recovery for 1 to 3 relays. Time for him to change, eat, recover. Then he can take the wheel and then be a co-driver before his next run to refocus and get into the race before his start.

It's up to you to find your balance according to your desires and your habits.

The more defined your race plan is, the more you will conserve energy and save time.

Knowing that even with the best of plans you will have to continually adapt during the race!

Ps: little advice! If you can, take a locker in your vehicle where you can separate your respective belongings. This will save you from having to empty your bags at each stop to find your belongings or supplies…

We hope these tips will be helpful in your preparation and during the event! Do not hesitate to contact us at if you have any specific questions.

See you soon

Find Marc on Facebook , Instagram and Strava and on his website .


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