Create a checklist!
Poor planning generally means that there will be mad rush on the morning of the competition searching for items you’ve misplaced or essential papers you need. Having a checklist can help you organize yourself and is something to refer to when things really start moving. Incorporate a checklist as part of your routine as having a routine can be relaxing in itself.
Book ahead of time!
Depending on the size of your event, it is prudent to book any travel or accommodations you might need for that day well in advance. A few days before the competition, call or email to confirm the reservation to ensure nothing has been missed. There are many things you can do before an event to help you prepare, like packing early, looking at the timetable and knowing where you are to be and when.
Stick to your routine!
A competition day should not be the day to try new things, stick to your routine and only eat or drink items that your body is already used to. Trying something new should be done in advance to determine what works and what doesn’t. Usually it’s the little things that can cause stress, so make sure you’re covered. Have your food ready, if not packed, the night before, check the weather, travel conditions, etc.
Take care of yourself!
Stay hydrated and go to bed early for a good night sleep. Nerves can keep you up, but knowing you have trained, planned ahead and that all the extra detail work is already done should help you unwind enough to get to sleep.
Perform your best!
After a final re-check of the day, you can relax and get ready to set a personal best!
References from the SIRC Collection
- Barber, L. K., Munz, D. C., Bagsby, P. G., & Powell, E. D. (2010). Sleep consistency and sufficiency: are both necessary for less psychological strain?. Stress & Health: Journal Of The International Society For The Investigation Of Stress, 26(3), 186-193.
- Clement, D., & Gilson, T. (2012). Helping Athletic Training Students Deal With Stress. International Journal Of Athletic Therapy & Training, 17(1), 20-23.
- McCann, Sean (2009). Routines, Rituals and Performing Under Stress. Soccer journal 54(1), 40;42.
- Spano, J. L. (2008). Impact of Life Stressors on Athletes. Athletic Therapy Today, 13(2), 42-43.