Over the year I have travelled to many running competitions.  When I look back on performances earlier in my career my road record wasn’t stellar.  Looking at past training logs I would often remark; “hips were sore”, “legs were heavy” and the list goes on!  As I became a more seasoned traveller I developed good habits.

Hydration.  Most athletes realize it is important to maintain optimal hydration.  Where I think they go wrong is by drastically increasing water intake a few days before competition, consequently lowering sodium levels.    A more practical solution might be to add electrolytes to the water you already consume and avoid foods and drinks that may have a have a diuretic impact (coffee, tea, sodas).

Compression Wear.  When I was training more seriously I instinctively started wearing compression clothing while travelling to competitions.   Most research indicates compression garments are a beneficial recovery tool, so you would think many of these same benefits (Including improvements in muscle soreness, improved blood flow, and improved blood lactate clearance) would apply to pre-competition.

Stretching Routine.   I know its difficult after a long day of travel not to want to head out for diner and the go to sleep.  After sitting for many hours muscle become stiff and alignment is thrown off.   I will focus most of my attention on the hip flexors.  Active isolated stretching is a good bet.

Massage. Of course I’m going to advocate massage therapy!  A few days before travelling to a competition I would have a general pre-race sports massage to promote blood flow and reduce inflammation.  Upon arriving at the competition destination I would often receive a 30 minute ‘flush’.  If I did not have access to a massage therapist I would spend 15 to 20 minutes doing self massage with a foam roller.

Here is a good video from Mike Warkentin on travel mobility.