Carb deplete or no?! + Weekending

(shorts, tank, shoes, socks)

Boston is just one week away…

My Saturday run was solo with a podcast, and I finished up with 50 miles for the week.

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We also took Beretta out for a walk, and Skye got in her sprints for the day.

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In 2019 I did a carb depletion the week leading up to the St. George Marathon and CIM.  I talk about it more in-depth in this post.  We ate very little carbohydrates for three days, followed by carb-loading for two days, and then we ate normally for two days.  For St. George, I had felt like the carb-depletion helped me, but I have no proof whether it really did or not.  The carb depletion made me feel so terrible and grumpy both times that I tried it and so when I thought about doing it for Boston, I couldn’t convince myself to go for it again.   While it might have helped my body store more carbs leading up to the race, I don’t want to feel that awful again.  I’ll eat pretty normally this week with an increase in carbs, and I’m excited to use Maurten gels during the race because they make me feel so good while running.

These carbs on Saturday tasted so good.

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We had a bunch of family in town this weekend, so we ate out together.

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An intense tetherball competition also occurred.

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Andrew was at work on Sunday, so I hung with the kids most of the day.

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The kid’s favorite pillow:

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And we also went over to celebrate my nephew’s birthday.

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My brother-in-law made our favorite banana cream pie, and I’m sure I could have eaten the entire pie if I had the opportunity.

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Off for my last double-digit run with a 5k time trial thrown in the middle!

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What about you?  Do you carb-load?  Carb-deplete?  Stick to normalcy leading up to a race?

-I always cut out fiber the day before a marathon, which works for me!

Did anyone have a long run this last weekend?  Was any good food eaten?

What was the last podcast that you listened to?

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I vote skip the depletion too!
I ran 16 miles after work in Saturday. And then barely had energy to eat dinner and get into bed!! I drank Maurten 320 for the first time before the run. Bedsides having to inhale 500 mL of fluid before getting out the door, I loved it!! Way better than Genucan.
Excited for Boston (as a spectator). I just read that Sarah Hall and Kellyn Taylor dropped out though. Bummer.


I really trust your opinion as a dietician! Thank you, Molly. Way to go on your 16 miler. I must try the Maurten 320, I hear the best things about it. I didn’t know about Sara Hall too… oh that is so hard. Hope your day is off to a great start!


Oh the banana cream pie looks so good.
For Saturdays 30km road I did gels. But on Sundays long run we went for a trail adventure and it was 20km and close to 6 hours because of the technical terrain and climbing. I packed cheese puffs dates pepperoni chocolate sour patch kids and hornby bars. And apple chips. I ate a lot of it.

Boston is so close! Many of our group have done Boston and we were reminiscing. Happy taurr week and have a great race and trip!! Have a good Monday too Janae!


I hope you get a banana cream pie sometime soon. Way to go on your weekend of RUNNING and adventuring. I want in on what you packed for Sunday, sounds delicious. I bet that was so fun to reminisce! I cannot wait. Thanks Kristine and I hope your day is a great one too.


Yahoo for one week to Boston! You must be so excited!

That banana creme pie looks delicious!

I stick to higher carb leading up to a race, but typically don’t pay a lot of attention. I am lucky (knock on wood) and have never had GI issues on a run…. I used to eat a fiber One bar pre run.

I had a 17 mile long run yesterday. It went fantastic! I finally feel like I am fueling enough. I used to never take fuel on a long run–except for my 20 milers and on race day. Yesterday, I ate before my run and had 2 1/2 gels and felt great during and after my run.

Have a wonderful Monday Janae!


Becky, I am SO happy to hear about how your 17 miler went, you are right on track! It’s amazing how much fuel helps us to feel our best… keep it up! A fiber one bar would probably kill me before a run ha. I am so excited for you to run Grandma’s!


From what I remember from my master’s degree in sports conditioning, I’m pretty sure that the carb depletion theory has been pretty debunked. ?‍♀️ Now don’t quote me in this, but off the top of my head, they have compared muscular glycogen storage of athletes following a carb depletion/loading protocol vs a carb loading only protocol (same training volume and plan) a and found no difference between the athletes and their glycogen levels. So…I say skip the depletion! ?


I came here to say this! Yes! I’m a sports dietitian and ACSM certified exercise physiologist and the research doesn’t support carb depletion before loading. No need to go hog wild on the carbs either – just a little increase in the days immediately prior to the race is sufficient particularly since training goes way down.


Laura, thank you so much for your help and I need to hire you to be my sports dietician! Good to know to not go crazy with the carbs too. That makes a lot of sense that with the huge drop in mileage, there doesn’t need to be a huge increase in carbs. Hope you are having a beautiful Monday!


THANK YOU THANK YOU for sharing this and validating me NEVER feeling like that again ha. A master’s degree in sports conditioning.. you are amazing! Thanks Chelsea and I hope your day has been great so far!


One week to go!!! Wahoo! I am so excited for you.
What a fun weekend to have lots of family. And that has to be your brother’s son… he looks just like your brother!
I eat pretty normally leading up to a race. I do eat more carbs than usual, but not a lot more. I know I said this before, but you have me so interested in trying the Maurten gels. I love my Ucan before a long run, but I may start trying those gels.
Here’s to a good new week!


Thank you so much Wendy! YES, that is my brother’s son with his girlfriend! He is leaving on a mission to Arkansas soon and he is so excited. I need to send you some of these gels, they are incredible. Happy Monday!


AHH!! Boston’s is only a week away! Can’t wait to follow you and hear all about it!

I did a 15k this weekend for a race and I realized I need to work on my hills now. WOW. It. Was. A. Struggle. But I did it, and really, isn’t that all that matters?! I wish I could be as fast as you!! I finished in 1:43 which I am happy with – we averaged about 11 min miles – which with how hilly the route was, I feel like that was so good!

Last podcast I listened to was Annie F. Downs “That sounds fun.” Super good and light hearted – very faith based which is good for me when I run or drive!

Have a great Monday, Janae!


Kristen! Congrats on your 15k! You did it and rock it on a really hard course! I hope you are recovering well and I would love to hear what is next for you. That sounds like an awesome podcast, I will have to check it out. Thanks Kristen, you too!


The week out from my last race I just listened to my body nutritionally. I know that sounds too simple, but it never steered me wrong. The mind and the nervous energy can overthink it.

Last podcast was Brene Brown on We Can do Hard Things. Excellent!

Happy Monday to you!


Amen to that. I truly think that is the best way to do it. I MUST listen to that episode, thank you. Happy Monday to you too!


I’m running Boston as well, and planning to fuel with Maureen too… ha – anyway, I have always been leery of depletion because of how rough I feel when I eat low carb. However, I am going to try a carb load – I’ve been following @featherstonenutrition … she works with Lift Run Perform athletes (I am coached by LRP, but have not worked with her directly). She has had some amazing advice on insta, and has a free carb loading guide. She says that depletion is not necessary, and is actually old science…so I’m going to rely on that :)


Happy tapering, Baili! I hope I get to see you in Boston and thank goodness for the Maurtens! I can’t thank you enough for the recommendation, I just started following her and I can’t wait to get tips from her. I’ll rely on that too because I never want to feel the way I felt when I did that again;). Have a beautiful day!


I had a fantastic active weekend….running with friends is the best and I felt so strong….have decided that this 75 day hard challenge is going to take more planning…..i need to plan some recovery time into those 75 days…and the 4 minute frozen cold showers have become a challenge….but, Boston, I’ll be watching for you on the live stream!


I am so glad you had a great weekend, Warren! YES to planning in more recovery time and I don’t think I could do 1 minute of a cold shower ha. Happy Monday!


I bet you’re pumped for Boston!

I usually cut out salads and fiber the day before or so, but mainly keep things the same. I don’t do tons of meat the week leading up to it, except for tuna or chicken. That makes me love that post race burger even more! And I kinda limit greasy stuff the week of, too. And I NEVER try anything new the day before:)

I have my long runs on my weekends, so Tuesday or Wednesday. And I made the TJ’s beer bread to go with chili and it is so good! If you don’t drink beer, no worries………….you make it with any carbonated beverage! Dr Pepper was pretty good!

Have a great pre race week!


Thank you Loribeth, I am so excited. I’ll have to take a look into cutting back a bit more on meat! Ummm I need that meal. Sounds amazing. Thanks friend, I hope your day has been great so far!


I carb deplete or carb flex. I’m not sure if it works, but my last marathon I did not hit the wall. Now, it could also mean that my body can use fat for energy better than when I train with just glycogen. What I hate about it: I know it’s just tricking your body. Is it “healthy”? Probably not. But I do think it works.


That is so awesome Miguel! Not hitting the wall is HUGE! I feel like running is all about tricking our bodies ha. Hope your day is a great one and thanks for sharing!


My favorite podcast is Car Talk, although I have so many that I follow. My favorite post-long-run lunch is pizza, and lately I’ve been enjoying the Costco/Kirkland brand cauliflower crust supreme pizza. It’s got lots of vegetables and protein and it’s so good!


I’ve seen that crust at Costco and it looks awesome! Off to check out that podcast, thank you for sharing. Enjoy the rest of your day, Cynthia!


Hi Janae! I do the fiber thing too before races. That’s crazy that you’re doing a 5k time trial today! Though it makes sense to be a really good predictor of marathon fitness. I just find 5k time trials so hard.
It’s snowing here today!!!! It doesn’t snow that much here and it’s snowing in April!! It’s crazy times.
Have a great day!


I’m with you, the 5k time trial is just SO hard. It hurt ha. And snow? Boooo… we are supposed to get a bit this week too. Thanks friend, you too!


Happy tapering week! Can you share your current shoe rotation ( or maybe you have recently but I obviously missed it!) I really need to get better at not running in the same shoe for 400 + miles and then buying a new pair ?


Hey Jessica! YAY for new shoes! I haven’t shared it recently so this is the perfect time! I rotate mostly between the Hoka Clifton 8, the Asics Novablast 2, the Hoka Speedgoats and now the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT% 2 for racing. I hope this helps and let me know what you get. Thanks!


The nephew holding Beck looks just like your sister!!!

How fun to have family in town-all those kids playing together and hanging out is awesome to see!!!


I totally agree with you, they are twins and so similar too! Thanks Kelly, it was a great weekend. I hope your day is a beautiful one, Kelly!


So exciting!! I’m an amateur but for the couple marathons I’ve run, I just went all out on carbs the two days before the race. As in really limited my protein but especially fat consumption so that 90% of my calories came from carb sources. It’s hard to tell if it helped since I have little experience but it really felt as though it did. This plan was based off Matt Fitzgerald’s book “The New Rules of Full and Half Marathon Nutrition”, which I believe you’ve already read.

I’m currently on a hiatus from running but I learn so much from you and look forward to seeing what works for you this marathon cycle. Wishing you all the very best!!

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