You've heard the famous quote that failing to prepare is preparing to fail…well, you can think of race simulation training as one of the best ways to specifically prepare for your event. It's true that one workout or one day should not make or break your event performance, but including at least one well-planned day of race simulation can really help get you mentally ready to perform.
During race simulation in advance of your event, your goal should be to test your overall race plan at race pace on a similar course in similar conditions, if possible.
An overall race plan considers the following:
Equipment and gear selection
Pre-event and during-event nutrition and hydration
Pre-event sleep and routine
If you have the ability to test all of this in an organized event or training race, that can be a great option, especially if it’s on the same or similar course as your goal event.
Three weeks out from the goal event, or earlier is a good time to practice race simulation. You can always do race sim more than once, as you'll want to take notes and make adjustments.
Your race simulation can be the full distance or duration of the goal event, but it does not need to be!
Finally, don't underestimate the confidence these sessions will give you going into the event. Instead of second guessing yourself, you will be able to go in with a plan and execute it with confidence.