The 10 Rules of Fueling (Runner's World)
This is just how I feel about this particular topic - check out the full article for the details about each rule. They have good things to say!
1. Eat Before - This is something I'm really bad about. When I was running with the training group I always had a waffle with peanut butter before a run. Now that I'm heading out all by my lonesome, I tend to sleep until the last possible minute and then head right for the door. Sometimes I eat a banana, most times I don't eat anything. Not good! I need to be better about that.
2. Sip Something - I do try to have some water before I head out. It's easier to chug water in the bathroom than it is to make breakfast downstairs, because I have to be careful not to wake the 3-year-old.
3. Carry Candy - I usually eat on runs 10 miles and longer. I started with Clif Shot Blocks when I was with the training group, then moved onto Gatorade Gu when I got annoyed with the blocks getting stuck in my teeth. After the Air Force tummy troubles, I've decided that those don't work for me on super long runs. The Jelly Belly Sport Beans seem to be fine for me, and I'm going to pick up some honey chews to try this weekend.
4. Drink While You're Out - I hate carrying things in my hands while I run, so I bought a hydration belt while I was training for Air Force on my own. Sure, I kind of feel like a tool wearing it, but it's kind of a necessity. I ended up with this one, because it was convenient. I've never worn it for a race, because I just don't see the need. I fill it half gatorade and half water.
5. Run to the Fridge - I must be in the minority, because I have a really hard time getting food down immediately following a hard run.
6. Pour Chocolate - Chocolate milk is definitely a post-run favorite! It's easier for me to drink than it is to eat. We've been using chocolate milk for recovery since the days of P90X.
7. Carb Up - Ah, the famous carb-loading! Most people think it's a night before thing, but the research I've done suggests that you should actually start tweaking your diet a week before the big endurance event. The Mayo Clinic suggests going to a 50% carbohydrate diet a week in advance. Dropping to 50% will allow your body to use up all of the glycogen that it has stored. 3-4 days before the big race, ramp it up to 70% to build the stores back up. This is the plan that I'm going to follow this year. I tried to do it with Air Force, but life got in the way that week. We used a really nifty excel workbook to track our macronutrient intake when we were doing the P90X nutrition program, so if you're interested, let me know and I'll send it out! Supposedly, women don't respond to carb loading as well as men. I think that's interesting.
"Finishing that 5K was the hardest thing I ever had to do. I ate more fettuccine alfredo, and drank less water than I have in my entire life. People always talk about triumphs of the human spirit. Well today I had a triumph of the human body. That's why everybody was applauding for me at the end. My guts, my heart and well I eventually puked my guts out. I never puked my heart out, and I am very proud of that."
8. Be Wary - Be careful what you eat before you run. I'm usually pretty good about what I eat in the hours before my runs, but I'm not so careful when it comes to Insanity workouts. High impact cardio after eating white garlic pizza is pretty nasty. Trust me.
9. Be Boring - I've heard too many horror stories to even think about trying some new food right before a run! The potties on my running routes are few and far between.
10. Then Have Fun - I run for beer! (and cupcakes, and ice cream, and pizza, depending on the week) Actually, I got a pleasant surprise in our local freezer aisle last night - a new limited batch from Ben and Jerry! It's in my freezer, waiting for me to finish my long run on Saturday.