Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Wednesday Woes

My ultra marathon yesterday, the Gothic Challenge, was wet, windy and a rather tough challenge both mentally and physically. It was the same location and route as the previous 2 but the weather forecast was even worse than before with rain and wind throughout.

I donned my waterproof jacket right at the start but that didn't stop the blimming wind taking my breath away. This time we were running uphill into the wind - nice! However, the weather gods must haven taken pity on us as the rain didn't come until later and we were treated to 2 hours of rain-free running before it did its worst and soaked us.

This time I was practising my fuelling strategy (get me sounding all knowledgeable, as if!) and I tried out some Tailwind combined with solid food (a piece of my banana cake & some salty crisps) which didn't cause any tummy problems. For many years I've trained in what's known as a 'fasted' state which just means I don't eat before I run which helps train your body to burn fat as a fuel rather than relying on taking in lots of carbohydrates. With what I have planned in a few weeks (details to follow very soon) I will have to take on much more fuel than I'm accustomed to so hence the trial. Apparently using Tailwind helps aid recovery too.

There's not much to say about the run itself as it was just a case of putting your head down and grinding out the miles. We were certainly a strange looking bunch all hidden behind cowls/hats with our heads bowed against the wind.

I opted for the 'short-ultra' of 29 miles and was delighted to finish in 6:00:36 which included a trip to the toilet and nipping back to my car to get some nice dry gloves (oh how wonderful it felt to exchange my soaking wet gloves for some nice warm and dry ones).

Next I have the Moonlight Challenge which starts on Saturday afternoon and goes into the night. A nice dry day would be very welcome!

Marathon 141


Old Runningfox. said...

Agree with your strategy of not eating before a run. I never do, but usually have a coffee before I step out the house. Nor did I ever consume anything during marathons. No gels for me though I drank water at every opportunity.
In long distance fell races I stuffed mini Mars bars and glucose tabs in my bum bag,the same as when running the Scottish Munros, but rarely touched them until I finished.
On long mountaineering (climbing) days a block of marzipan came in handy, to the envy of my climbing partners!

Susie Hewer said...

Hi MrFox! Lovely to hear from you and I'm re-assured to learn that you don't eat before a run either. I too drink a nice strong coffee beforehand and I believe that hit of caffeine helps enormously. When I first started marathining I tried the usual Sports drinks and felt completely bloated with far too much liquid sloshing around in my stomach. Someone gave me a gel to try and I spat it out 'cos it was horrid so I've always been a plain water girl for long distances up to and including 50 milers, until now that is as I realise that plain water just won't hack it for what I'll be doing next.