What to do while not shooting at a match
Whether you are the first shooter or not, make sure that the first thing you do when you get to a stage is look at the rules for that stage. It might call out things such as mandatory magazine changes, or a specific route to be taken through the stage. This is usually posted in a fairly central position to the stage. It is probably where all the other shooters are huddled up at.
Walk the course
As often as you can, walk the course at your match. The best way to do this is to go out and place stickers over the target holes, reset the metal targets, or in some other way be involved with actively being on the course. This allows you to visualize the path you might take. The more you plan your route, your transitions, and how you want to tackle the course, the better your run will most likely go.
Study the other shooters
There are usually going to be quite a few people at the match. This will get broken down into squads. But the odds that you aren’t going to be the only person in your squad is pretty good. So get to know the other shooters. Ask them about their set up. See what they have done to modify their belt or weapons. Everyone is always looking to get better and go faster. Better to work smart, by observing others, than hard, by making mistakes or being inefficient in your set up.
If you were in the military of any kind you are probably pretty familiar with the old saying of drink water “beat the heat drill sgt, beat the heat”. This is no joke. Staying hydrated is very important to your run. This doesn’t mean show up to the event and start drinking water though. Start hydrating several days in advance. Then continue to drink while you are at the match. Staying hydrated allows your body to operate at its fullest potential.