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Old 10-02-2012, 03:06 AM   #1
steves1bear
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2 running questions

I need some advice:

1. What do you use for energy for mid to long distance runs? At around the 2-2.5 mile mark, fatigue really sets in. I'm only going about 5-6 miles right now and I bring water on my runs, but for some reason it's really hard to keep going once the fatigue hits.

2. I'm thinking of switching to morning runs instead of night. Wondering if that would help with question 1. I've always run at night and have no idea how to run in the morning. Any suggestions on how to make the switch? My big concern is getting enough fluids and running on an empty stomach. What's worked for you?

Thanks!
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:25 AM   #2
Ariel484
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steves1bear View Post
I need some advice:

1. What do you use for energy for mid to long distance runs? At around the 2-2.5 mile mark, fatigue really sets in. I'm only going about 5-6 miles right now and I bring water on my runs, but for some reason it's really hard to keep going once the fatigue hits.

2. I'm thinking of switching to morning runs instead of night. Wondering if that would help with question 1. I've always run at night and have no idea how to run in the morning. Any suggestions on how to make the switch? My big concern is getting enough fluids and running on an empty stomach. What's worked for you?

Thanks!
I am hardly an expert on this kind of stuff, but I'll tell you what's worked for me...

But first, please keep in mind that what works for me (or anyone else on this board) may not necessarily work for you. This is going to take some experimentation on your part!

For me personally, I don't take fuel until my runs are at least 7 miles...I seem to do okay during shorter runs without fuel. For the most part I'll take something every 4 miles or so, and I like Gu gels (vanilla flavor only) or 1/2 bag Gu chomps (strawberry or blueberry pomegranate). I've also tried Hammer Gel (too watery), Honey Stinger gel (too sweet for me) and other Gu flavors (mint chocolate - made my stomach burn, chocolate - reminded me too much of frosting)...this is the kind of stuff you need to experiment with. What consistency do you like? Gels or chews? Do certain flavors not agree with you? Also, I have read that you want to fuel BEFORE you start to feel tired, so maybe you want to take a gel/chew BEFORE your run begins (since you feel the fatigue at mile 2) or take a look at your diet - what you are/are not eating the night before you run and the morning of your run??

The second question - I became a morning runner about 6 months ago. It just works better with my schedule...I used to run after work but my husband coaches in the afternoons so I need to be home for our dog. And I actually like running in the morning much better! It really wakes me up in the morning and I love knowing that I can just go home and not have to worry about getting the miles in later.

Right now my super-early morning runs are only 3 miles, so I'm doing okay with not eating anything beforehand. Right now I'm training for Marathon Weekend 2013, so these 3-milers are going to become 4- and then 5-milers, and I'm really not sure that I'll be able to get through those without eating. I don't worry about fluids so much for these runs because I'm pretty good about drinking a TON of water the rest of the time (I keep a 32-ounce Nalgene bottle at my desk and try to drink 2 per day). Again, this may be totally different for you...you can search something like "Runner's World morning running" and find forums where people are talking about running in the morning.

I really think you're just going to have to try some things out and decide what makes you feel best...keeping in mind that this may result in some less-than-stellar runs along the way. But it will be worth it when you find what works for you.

Good luck!
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:26 AM   #3
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How is your fueling and hydration when you're not running? It sounds to me like you may need to think about how you're fueling during the rest of the day, particularly an hour or so before you go out. Are you in a nice hydrated state throughout the day? Generally speaking anything under an hour really shouldn't need mid-run nutrition supplements, however that said, on my long runs I take in some nutrition around the 45 minute mark.

As far as morning runs, I eat a half a banana and some almond butter and some chia seeds at least 20 minutes before I head out. I also drink a bit of coffee and of course some water. But not a ton so I'm not all bogged down.

Really I think it is a lot about learning what works for you and your body. Try something a little different and make note of your results. Make a mental note of the days you are more and less fatigued and what you had to eat prior to that, even note what you had for meals the evening before, etc.

Best of luck!
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Old 10-02-2012, 11:45 AM   #4
adkkev
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For runs under 6-7 miles you probably don't need to bring water along, unless it's particularly hot/humid. Hydrate before you run. And as others have posted, hydrate all day. You could try & suck on a "Sport Bean" midway through your run ... it may give you a boost.

Of course you may find things different if you start running in the morning.

I'm an evening runner because that's what works best for my schedule. However I have gone out and run on some early summer mornings just to beat the heat and humidity. I didn't eat much before heading out, and time constraints held me to 6 miles or so. You're going to have to test different things in the morning and see what works best for your body. There will probably be some sort of adjustment period.

There are some people who recommend running on an empty stomach ... there was an article about this a couple months ago in Runners World ... go to their website & do a search for it ... it might be helpful.
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Old 10-02-2012, 07:40 PM   #5
What would Walt do
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I'm an evening runner during the week but do my weekend long run in the morning.

My trick for evening is to have a really hearty snack (bagel & cream cheese for example) at my desk late in the day. Then I try to run early in the evening so that I'm finishing around the time I would normally eat. Otherwise I start to feel sluggish.

In the mornings I try to have toast and a banana or similar, 30 minutes or so b4 I go. Morning & evening,I always carry water with me in a handheld bottle(Nike or Fuelbelt)

You could always try Powerade instead of water- the kind with real sugar not the zero cal- to see if that gives you the boost you need. Easier & cheaper than the fuels.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:02 AM   #6
steves1bear
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Thank you so much for the advice! I knew there would be some trial and error no matter what I tried, but now I have a better idea of where to even start.

Tonight I really paid attention to what I ate and drank between dinner and running. It made such a difference. I'm pretty sure I haven't been drinking enough during this time frame. I realized I make sure to stay hydrated during the day because it's so humid here, but once it cools off after dinner, I don't drink much at all.

Thanks again! You've definitely given me some things to think about.
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