Planning your hydration and nutrition

June 14, 2009

After my long run on Saturday I was talking with a friend about hydration and nutrition on long runs and during races. I’m not an expert on nutrition or hydration, for what you need based on your specific body type, sweat rate, goals etc nothing beats seeing a nutritionist. This is more on the part of things you can control yourself before, during and after a run or race. The most important thing is in my opinion is to plan it out and rely on yourself. With a group like Rogue we’re fortunate that we have water out on the course on long runs, track workouts etc. On the longer and warmer days there’s also Gatorade mixed in. In the end on these runs you don’t know going into it what will be out there. Even on races, you don’t know if the Gatorade or energy drink will be mixed well, diluted, super strong or just plain old nasty tasting. After training for 6 months for a marathon it’s a shame to leave all of that to chance.

Again on this I need to thank a few people from Team Rogue for teaching me something about this during our training for CIM. I always took GU on long runs and for CIM planned to just do that and made do with the water and cytomax at the race. I stole a page from the rest of the guys plans and started taking thermolytes (for electrolytes) and GUs on all my runs … as long as I got water on a run I had everything I needed for a run or race. It was kind of nice, didn’t have to worry about anything but getting water on the race. Also on training runs knowing I have everything I need, and don’t have to think about … “where is the Gatorade”, or don’t get tiered from not being able to absorb water without enough electrolytes.

  • Advice #1: Figure out what you need on a run and race and try and get at much of it yourself, not relying solely on others to provide it who you don’t really know.
  • Advice #2: Recovery drink. You HAVE to have it on any medium to long run. Within 30 minutes of ending your run. You will recover better, and have energy during the day.
  • Advice #3: Hydrate all week long. That doesn’t mean you have to load up on sugar on Gatorade. It means getting the salts and water you need. Most days at work I’ll have one big glass of water with a Nuun tab.

On the brutal run on Saturday all three of these came in very handy. I couldn’t have survived without all the termolyte pills, half way into the run I could feel salt caking on my face and knew I was loosing more salt than I usually do so decided to make use of my extra 2 thermolyte pills on the run. When we finished I was completely wiped out and didn’t think I could have made it 10 more minutes without falling asleep. Luckily my recovery drink (Cranberry Blend Juice with Whey Protien) was on hand and once I had that in my system was able to relax and finish out with a long stretching routine.


Humility and learning to survive on a long run

June 13, 2009

Today’s 22 mile long run was not easy by any means, it was slow but not easy. Last week after our long run Steve was ragging on us for using the word slow run, reminding us that in our base building we’re all running easy not slow. Well today, there was no easy no matter what pace I tried to run … so it was just plain old slow. I’ll go into a little more on the run but before I do I have to thank Mus, Damon, Ramon, Andrew and Ken for keeping me alive on today’s run. If they weren’t running in front of me today I would have walked a lot of the run today.

We started at 5:30 and I forgot my electrolyte pills and sun glasses at the Rogue Annex so I ran back right as we started to grab both. The guys were a little under a quarter mile ahead of me and I never really caught up for a while. After a mile it was obvious to me today would be a tough run, I was drenched with sweat and knew I’d need to hydrate well and would make use of the extra thermolyte pills I packed in case it was hot. Just when I’d have the guys in sight I’d see a water fountain and take a quick drink. Between Rogue and the the Mopac Foot Bridge I stopped twice for water, when we got to the water at the Mopac Foot Bridge I finally caught up with the guys since they stopped for water. That was the first of 2 thermolyte pills from a set of 4. I figured I should just take them now and plan on 2 every 40 or so minutes so I would absorb any water I took in well. The run was a pretty standard up Lake Austin Blvd, then Scenic, Mount Bonnel, Balcones to Hancock … on the way back taking Pecos. I could never really keep up with the guys, I tended to fall of the back on each section after the water stop, catch up at the water stop and then off we’d go again. I’d set my mind on just running today based on effort, not closing or pushing and was glad I did otherwise it would have been a disappointing run. I’m not sure I could have pushed even if I wanted to … and if the price I’d pay the rest of the weekend or week would be worth it.

The temperature wasn’t to bad, under 80 degrees but the humidity was rough. This is for me the first true summer weather run and it’ll take a few of these to get acclimatized so in 2 weeks I hope a run like today’s isn’t as … well death marchish mentally. It was good run to realize that there is only so much you can control and just chugging along with what you can do on any given do is all you can ask.

Thanks again for the run folks.

Current Wins: First 22 mile run of the season, work trip to Berkeley

Current Losses: Humdity, little to no cooking

All those electrolyte options to stay hydrated

June 10, 2008

Given the heat and just not so great running weather I thought I better start hydrating again. When I first started running I would drink Gatorade like it was going out of fashion (I hope that’s the right phrase … remember “I’m not from this country”). After a while I realized there’s so much sugar in energy drinks if what I’m trying to do is just hydrate then I need to try something else. Steve Sission (Team Rogue coach) recommended Electormix. Since them I’ve used that Emergen-C and recently NUUN.

So Electromix, no sugar but you have to make a liter and doesn’t taste like much. Emergen-C is good for a glass so easier to use, more vitamins and minerals in addition to the electrolytes. NUUN, drop the tablet and you’re good to go. Now each of them have different amounts of things in them, NUUN seems to have the most sodium. So too many choices, I think I’m going to leave it to taste. Emergen-C I can only handle with really cold water, the other two with cool water. So that’s my decision. I’m sure there are lots of other options too but just these three are a few too many for me. What is the difference anyway?

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