Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Day Before the USMLE Step 1

Or: How I spent the day before Boards.

Edit: If Googling "The Day Before the USMLE Step 1" brought you here, welcome. Maybe you're wondering what other people do the day before Boards. Or maybe wondering what you should do the day before Boards. I studied a bit - but lots of people don't. I think I got a couple questions from my day-before review, and it was calming to just review things I already knew. Definitely NOT a time to learn something you've never understood. I sincerely recommend avoiding anything that isn't already familiar - you want to cultivate some confidence for your test day.

To see how it turned out (plus what I ate to keep my brain fueled) see here

And thoughts about scores once I got them are here.


Yes, tomorrow is "P-D-E-M-M-D-T-A Day." 
(That's "Please Don't Ever Make Me Do This Again Day.")

I started medical school 2 years ago. I've studied hard. I've studied really hard. I've passed all my classes. I've dealt with a lot of self-doubt and not a couple failures.

However, I'm still here and although these have been the most depressing 6 weeks of my life, between finals and the constant studying, I made it to this, test day, and I will go on afterwards no matter what.

So tomorrow we'll see if I learned anything.

8 hours. 322 questions.

I studied for a good chunk of the day, and around 6 I quit because I found lots of topics I didn't feel I knew well, and I started getting anxious, and that is exactly the opposite of what I need the day before my exam.

So, what does one eat the day before a big test? Just some deliciousness:

Breakfast: Strawberry Colada Oatmeal

Lunch: I went on a great lunch date to Ranu Thai with classmates Eric and Andrew (who took their tests on Monday and have become rays of sunshine and freedom). Ranu has a $6.50 lunch special. Tofu hot and sour soup, salad, yellow curry and a piece of tempura. 

Snacktime: A lovely fuji. Side of studying with Molly and Gennaya, my quizzing angels full of encouragement and also lots of knowledge. They take it on Monday, and they will rock.

Oh hey Molly!

Dinner: It's just about corn season, and this was so delicious. Side of balsamic/oil salad with raisins. And what's in the cup? Mineral water of course, but in a champagne glass, because we're celebrating making it to test day. 

Dessert: Hot Chocolate soymilk.

The carton looks a little speckled from some aggressive pouring when I first opened it. 

And now?

Well, the night before my MCAT, (the big test you take to apply to medical school - almost exactly 3 years ago) I watched the season finale of Grey's Anatomy, and it went pretty well. 

So now before I get a hopefully great night's rest, I'm watching some House and turning this into a tradition. The USMLE Step 1 is a completely different beast to the MCAT, but I feel relaxed, sort of. A little. As much as can be.  

I'm well-organized for tomorrow, I've worked hard, there's nothing to do now but go kill it. 

Do you have any night-before-a-test traditions?

1 comment:

Renuka Ashtekar said...

Hey, this was just the kind of relaxing stuff I wished I to read when I googled 'One day before step 1'. Thanks for making this post.

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