But first, last night.
When Brooke woke up from her nap, the first thing she did was tell me exactly what she wanted to do:
1. Ride her bike and take a selfie (okay, the selfie part was my idea).
2. Eat broccoli. (I can’t make this stuff up, okay actually I probably could but seriously… she woke up and told me broccoli and insisted on watching it while it roasted).
My trail running buddy is recovering like a champ after her surgery to lengthen the tendons in her knee and clean out her meniscus. Word on the street (from her doctor) is that she may be back out on the trails again with me soon!
Good knee. We are proud of you.
Mothering fail occurred last night. We got home right at bed time and I had forgotten to put Brooke’s favorite thing (her blanket) in the world into the dryer before we left so when we got home it was still wet. She somehow forgave me and helped me load it into the dryer.
A reader sent me this. Why didn’t I think of this a long time ago!?
Every now and then I will wear my Jawbone (an activity tracker) mainly because I love to track my sleep and motivate myself to do better with it. This was what my Jawbone told me I did on the day of my marathon. The mileage was a little bit off but still kind of cool to look at.
A reader asked me the other day to talk a little bit more about how I avoided hitting the wall during my last marathon.
First, I love what Hal Higdon says in THIS BOOK about hitting the wall:
During my first marathon I seriously had no idea what I was doing. I saw people around me taking in all sorts of fuel but I had no idea when or what I should be eating. I knew that it was important to be hydrated during the race but the whole eating thing while racing was foreign to me. And that is why I bonked/hit the wall at miles 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 26.1 and 26.2.
Over the years I have tried a trillion different ways to fuel and hydrate during races and I think at this last marathon I figured out how it all works for me. What works for me may not work for somebody else but I’ll just share what I have found is best for me.
1. I take in more calories race morning than I used to. I used to just eat a bagel about an hour before the marathon but this last time I started even earlier. I had one plain bagel 2.5 hours before the race, another one hour before the start and about 50 calories of a honey stinger waffle 30 minutes before the gun went off. Probably about 650 calories race morning. That is what worked for me (remember test all of these things out on a long run, not a race:)
2. I really thought for a long time that shot blocks/chews were for me but they just aren’t. I just can’t chew all of the calories that I need to eat while I am running. It takes too much time and too much energy and so I definitely get behind on keeping my glycogen tank filled with shot blocks. Salted Caramel Gu is my thing.
3. To slowly take in the gel. Taking an entire gel all at once makes my stomach really cramp up. I usually start taking a gel after a water station (where I grab a water, not gatorade) and take in little sips of the gu at a time. It probably takes me about a mile to finish off a gel and I take in about 25% of the gel at a time. All at once is just too much to me and I like to feel the gradual increase of blood sugar rather than one big shot!
4. I’ve said this before but it helped me so much especially while racing in temperatures hotter than what I am used to. WALK through the water stations. This allowed me to actually drink the entire cup of water or gatorade rather than 90% of the cup being all over my face. I also switch off at each aid station between water and gatorade.
5. I start early with fueling. I take in my first gel about 45-60 minutes into the race and another one every 50 minutes after that. I start drinking at the first aid station—> I take in my fluids and calories long before I start feeling thirsty or low on energy because once you get thirsty/low on energy it is too late to try to catch up.
6. No more FLY AND DIE (at least I am trying real hard to not do this). Attempting to keep an even pace throughout the race helped me to be consistent with my fueling too!
Related articles that are awesome and you should really read if you are wanting to get more serious about figuring out your fueling:
How To Tap Into Fat For Fuel(an article for triathletes but the idea about training your body to turn fat into energy at a faster rate is the same for runners)
Marathon Fueling- How Not To Bonk (He recommends training your body to use fat as fuel by ‘practicing running fast while tired and teaching your body to be more efficient at marathon pace.’)
PS the reason it is so great to train your body to burn fat more efficiently as you run—> our bodies have a lot more fat storage to draw from than glycogen storage:)
What have you found works best for your fueling/hydration during a race?
Anyone have an activity tracker? How do you like it?
Favorite veggie to roast?
What candy would you fill up your ice dispenser with?