The following are things I strongly suggest you do not do before racing a half.
1) While the party bus is stopping for more beer and liquor, do not run .25M to a Taco Bell to grab some deliciousness—even if you are very hungry and inherently suspect of wedding food. I specifically do not recommend running almost half a mile in your rented shoes (read: ice stakes with shiny black tops).
2) Do not assume that your race bib and d-tag (which are located in your car) are safe because they are in your car. Especially when you have to give your keys to a friend because you are on the party bus. If you do, you will realize at 6:45am race day that your race bib and d-tag are in fact no longer in your car, but at your friend’s house roughly 30 minutes away.
3) Do not fail to recognize that the groom is going to reenact the famous dance move from Dirty Dancing and you end up unexpectedly catching a 260lb man while simultaneously straining your lower back. Because, said lower back will hurt for the rest of the night and the following morning before the race.
4) Do not dance your little booty off in previously mentioned destroyer of feet rental shoes until about 10pm (when you finally realize how much your feet actually hurt and you put on a pair of running shoes—retired of course).
5) Do not go out to a club/bar after the wedding and dance for several more hours. And really, do not close down the bar.
6) Do not stop and eat greasy pizza at 2am. I mean, you do have a race in about six hours.
7) Do not get home and to bed around 3am. This is true no matter what. But this is even more true when you have previously agreed to meet up with some friends at 6:40am so that everyone can get to the race early. Because that would mean you have to get up at 6am to be on time.
If you fail to observe these rules, you will find yourself at the starting line with just under 3 hours of sleep, very sore feet, an even worse lower back, all kinds of angry digestive problems, and the stupidest smirk on your face.
The aforementioned notwithstanding, I had an amazing time at the wedding. Congrats J and J. The back pain went away during the race and I sat on the 7:00/M pace group for the first 11M. Then I surged with another member of the pack and finished just ahead of the group. All things considering, it was a great race. I was right on pace.