Yep, happened again yesterday doing the HIIT (Hi Intensity Interval Training) workout. Just before the 7th or 8th sprint my right sneaker felt loose and sure enough I forgot to double tie my laces. Had to take time to re-tie both as the other one wasn't far behind in wanting to come undone. Just what you don't need if going for a new personal best. Not that you can't accomplish great things with untied laces, just look at Usain Bolt. He won the 100 Meter and set a new world record at the 2008 Beijing Olympic games, all with his left shoe untied.
Still, if we can make our runs and races easier why not. So here's my list of things I've come up with to do just that.
1. Double Tie Your Laces (oh, you've heard this one before.)
2. Blow your nose! You think it's funny but it's not :) Runners know that everything gets "juicy" as you get going. Sweats bad enough, no one wants a wrist band covered in boogers too.
3. Run with water. It's amazing how a dry mouth/palate can affect performance, but it does. A little goes a long way and I usually make it through with 8-12 oz per hour.
4. Warm-Up Don't be afraid to walk around, jog in place or even stretch before hand. Your run will be that much better for it.
5. Cover your nipples (c'mon guys and gals that's medical terminology. And if that offends you you'd best skip the Wiki) and other hot spots with tape or other friction aids. The longer the run the more damage you can inflict on yourself so plan accordingly. Blisters can make your run unbearable or stop you dead in your tracks.
6. Don't Eat Within 2 hours Of Start - That's kind of a personal preference and some may be able to get away with an hour or even less, but do the research and see what others think and put it to the test. I've run after not having eaten for 4 or more hours and had some really good runs. Eating too soon before the run/race starts diverts blood from your muscles (where you'd like it) to your intestines to help digest the food you just ate, sapping performance and, maybe even worse, paving the way for some killer cramps and/or nausea. You have about an hour of energy stored in your muscles so save the "Goo" for after that 5 or 10K, unless your running longer distances.
That's my list so far. Have I missed anything? What tips and tricks do you use to get you through your runs? Thanks and be safe out there.