My legs and joints are aching fiercely right now, after running about 30 kilometres this weekend – about 10.5 on Saturday and 19 on Sunday. I would like to say I feel fit and ready for the Marathon by the Sea, but the truth is, those runs were rough.
On Saturday, I blamed it on the heat and improper fueling. When I returned home at about 9:20 a.m., it was hovering over 30 C with the humidex. I’ve never been so sweaty. I looked like I had just stepped out of a lake. Needless to say, this was not an enjoyable run. I was drained and probably dehydrated. I also ran without eating breakfast, which is a big no-no.
The problem I always run into is giving myself enough time to digest food before a run. So I often end up running on an empty stomach because it feels better than running with food gurgling up my throat. Knowing that I wanted to tackle my last long run with a group of friends on Sunday morning, I aimed to prepare myself.
I drank as much water as I could stomach throughout Saturday. That was good. Then I picked up some ingredients for a healthy carb-load of a supper: quinoa, chicken, walnuts, raisins and parsley all tossed together with some oil and vinegar. I also purchased a can of yummy coconut water and found my chocolate gel I recently picked up from the running room. I set those aside for Sunday morning. Then I went to bed early, asleep by 11 p.m. and set my alarm for 6:30 a.m. so I could get up and eat, and digest a bit, before our 8 a.m. run.
For breakfast I had a piece of toast with peanut butter, a banana, and more water. Then I filled one of my little fuel belt bottles with water, and the other with coconut water (a natural electrolyte).
I thought those preparations would have me ready for Sunday’s 19 K. But it wasn’t long into the run that I started to feel draggy and tired. My energy was still zapped. I had trouble keeping up with my fellow runners. I know they run at a faster pace than me, but I thought I could keep up. Usually I find the first hour of a long run pretty pleasant, but Sunday was different. Maybe I’m just not good at keeping up with others, I’m not sure. Still, I managed to finish with the group with a time of just over two hours. Not bad, but I think tackling a long run after the sweaty 10 K was not a good plan.
I have two weeks to wind down and rest properly while still doing shorter runs before my first half ever. I just hope I don’t run into any fueling issues on the big day.
Feel free to share your fueling tips and tricks… I need all the help I can get!!