• Goal:  Get in and out of the aid station in two minutes or less. 
  • Be familiar with the roads leading to the aid stations and estimated travel times to reach each station.
  • Get a copy of my pacing sheet, including split time goals, and pace times.   Be very familiar with it.  Carry it at all times. 
  • Be very familiar with all the contents of my crew bag, so you can grab stuff quickly.
  • Arrive at the aid station in time with my crew bag and a chair.  Update my pace sheet to help you predict my arrivals.   See if the volunteers need some help while you wait.   Take some cat naps, read a good book, cheer arrivals.  Have fun.
  • Check to see if I have a drop bag at the station.  If so, get it before I arrive.  After I use it, take it with you if I won’t visit the aid station again.
  • Give me a cheer and high fives when I arrive.  Make a big deal about it, like I’m some sort of hero.  Joke around, make me laugh even if it hurts.  If nothing else, this will snap me out of my death-march fog and get me energized.
  • Make sure the aid station captain gets my race number both in and out of the station.
  • Until mile 60-70, I probably will not want to sit down at aid stations unless I need to make a shoe adjustment.  My goal will be in and out in two minutes.
  • You might just dump the contents of my crew bag out near my chair so it is easy to grab stuff.  I’ll get frustrated if I have to dig for something in a bag.
  • Force me to eat and drink.  I will typically drink coke at the aid stations.  Encourage me to eat, and make suggestions, tell me what they have. I usually eat sandwiches, salty potatoes, some salty chips, soft cookies.  Soup will also work, especially when it gets cold.  The soup must be lukewarm, not hot.  If it is too hot, put some ice in it too cool down. Make sure I have some food in my hip pack on the way out to munch on.
  • Eating and particularly drinking a lot is vital to doing well, and I won’t feel like doing it myself.  Be firm.  This is key for me.  In the aid station I might be more focused on changing some clothes, fixing a blister, etc. and will forget to eat/drink enough.  If I’m nauseous, chances are I need salt.  Ask me when the last time I took S-cap was.  Put 1-2 in my hand and make me take them.
  • Try not to let me dawdle in an aid stations. Keep prodding me along. Be firm. If I start talking about dropping out and I’m not injured, tell me to suck it up and quit whining.
  • Take care of my needs in the aid station: Refill my bottles with sports drink or water.  Know what I want in them ahead of time.  (Diluted Ensure, sports drink, or water.)  If there are extra bottles in the crew back, have them pre-filled and just exchange old for new.  During the day I might want some ice in it.   If is is really hot, I might want ice in my hat.
  • Offer me whatever’s available.   I probably won’t be too observant when tired, late at night.   I get indecisive and quiet when tired.  Make suggestions, or just tell me what to do.  Be bossy.  I won’t be offended.   I might be grouchy, but that’s ok.
  • It would be a big help if you helped me change my socks and clean my feet.  I probably should do this at the 50-mile mark.  I waste too much time doing this, help is really appreciated.
  • Late in the race I worry about stupid stuff and it affects my pace.  Don’t complicate my mind with things I shouldn’t have to worry about.  (If you wreck my car, wait to tell me about it after the race.  Better yet, go get it fixed.) 
  • As I leave the station, make sure I’m not leaving something behind.  When I get tired, I leave stuff behind. (I’ve left behind water bottles, sun glasses, flash light, gloves)