As well as physically preparing (push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups, running 1-5 miles with some terrible inclines), I'm memorizing some old bugle notes and familiarizing myself with Army ranks and insignia. I'm not a military brat, so I have to make sure I know these things before I report.
My main reason for wanting to remember the bugle notes actually isn't the same for wanting to memorize insignia/rank. It's important, at least in my opinion, for all of the cadet candidates to learn at least the ranks of both Officer/NCOs and Officer Cadets before reporting so we know what each person does. That matters a lot to me, though there's always "sir/ma'am" for when you're in doubt while addressing a cadre.
I'm memorizing the bugle notes so that I don't need to pull my Plebe Bible out of thin air to study during Beast, or more importantly, to help others learn their New Cadet information. It's imperative to me that everyone in my Beast company feels safe when being asked a question by an NCO/Officer or cadre. Of course, this won't always happen, and I obviously won't know everything when I report even if I use every resource available to me. But I want to do my best for everyone else around me and be a valuable member of my team.
Most kids, according to what I've heard, won't know most of the information upon arrival to West Point even though they had access to it. And, of course, some kids do memorize it and have trouble reciting when the information is being demanded. That's why the Cadet-in-the-Red-Sash stuff is so intimidating. Being physically and mentally prepared does not only help you. That's why I like West Point and the Army so much. Because you help each other. Because you make each other feel safe.
And if your company feels safe with you, I think you'll be surprised with what you'd do for them...and what they'd do for you!