I know I make it pretty clear what I do for extra amounts of carb on the day of my long run, but I wanted to talk about the before and after day nutrition and then recap today's run. If you haven't seen me post what I do for my long run days, I add in 50g of carb per one hour of running so today I ran for 2 hours and 20 minutes, so I'm going to eat 130g of carb on top of what I already eat. WOAH. I won't lie and say that it's easy to get in all that nutrition because that's a lot of food, but I know that my body needs it for recovery so I try my best.
Everyone is very individual so it's hard to say that exactly what works for me will work for you and I've had to toy around with many different things to find what works best for me.
I keep it pretty simple.
The day before a long run, I increase my carbs by 20g the night before. I don't do anything crazy but I just eat like another bowl of oatmeal before I go to bed. I know that many hear about carb loading, and I find that if I try to eat some big pasta meal than I can just feel it sitting in my stomach and that's not fun for anyone so I stay away from all of that. I just add a little extra nutrition.
I drink tons and tons of water and have to be intentional about this the day before. I haven't always done this and it ALWAYS catches up to me. I have the most terrible stomach pain and TMI but I'm like in the bathroom all day after a long run if I'm not hydrated properly. Yesterday, I was chugging water all day.
Normally, I take just my gu or gel and I don't take water and I just "plan to stop at water stations along the way." That's a lie. I don't stop. How dumb is that? Yes, I'm aware. I'm really weird about carrying things while I run and I'm always weird about stopping. I just don't like either one haha! And my body let me know really quick. So, today I changed that and it helped so much. Today, I took this "fanny pack" that had 3 pieces of candy, a gu and a water bottle. The water bottle is supposed to go on the fanny pack, but that stayed for literally 0.1 mile out of the door because it was just bouncing up and down.
I held the water, I tossed the water at mile 5, I picked the water back up at mile 9, I tossed the water at mile 13, I picked the water back up at 15. I was doing a lot of looping today so I would just scoop it up as I went past. I had a watermelon candy at mile 5, mile 9, a gu at mile 13 and another candy at mile 15. I would drink water in between each time I ate something. This was a total of almost 30g of carb on my run. When, I return home, I had a Cocogo which is 10g carb. If you are just drinking water, then your electrolyes are already off and they are just going to get worse if you ONLY hydrate with water. You NEED electrolytes. You can get a 10% discount of Cocogo using KATIESFITSCRIPT and I'm not just saying these things because of this. I TRULY believe in the product.
I also make sure to have a big bowl of oatmeal the morning before a long run which is about 30g carb. So, at 10am, I had already had 70g carb then I ate a meal when I returned capping it off at 100g by literally 10:30. I love these days. CARBS!!!
It has taken me about 5 long runs to really find my niche and what works for me, so it may take you some time. My legs are always so achy after a long run so I take some Ibuprofen as well. I NEVER EVER am this intentional about things. I know that I am meticulous about health but I also have a lazy streak with it. You don't see me eating super creative meals because #aintnobodygottimeforthat. I'm like "ehhhhh I'm gonna have egg whites with a side of 20 goldfish" so I hit my macros every single day, but it's not fancy, I promise ;) haha!
Today's run was fantastically painful. I woke up with my same head cold. I woke up at 5am probably because of nerves. This was not by alarm clock, but I just went ahead and got up. I used some nasal spray to clear my congestion and took some cough medicine. I knew I was in for an awful run but my goal was to finish.
Mile 1 and 2 were fast right out of the gate. My calves hurt literally from step 1. I have terrible knots in my calves always. I thought to myself "This is going to suck but you are going to have to peel me off the pavement before I don't make it 18 miles"
Somehow, life didn't happen until mile 6. I don't remember at all. I literally was just cruising and daydreaming about other things. Mile 6 just felt awesome. I was like "I AM A CHAMPION HERE ME ROAR" Katy Perry style. You know when you just wanna like dance because you're running so good. I went like 7:30 pace that mile. Then, at mile 8, I was like "Yea Katie, calm your horses. You have a LONG way to go." Not long after this, a biker literally like checked me. I mean literally hit me with his handle bars. I was not in the way, at all. He was a jerk and didn't even apologize.
Mile 9 always feels nice. That's halfway, but this is when I knew my legs were actually weaker than my lungs today. The aching began and it continued for another 9 miles. I always make my runs in segments so that it feels more obtainable. I tell myself "I can make it the next 3 miles to that one spot." When I get there, I tell myself "I can make it 2 miles to that one place" and I keep doing this until I reach my goal. I have relentless forward motion as I've heard runners say. Like, literally, I will fall over and bonk before I let my feet stop. I WILL NOT go in before it's time on long run days.
Mile 13, I went 7:35 and I had been going less than 8 min miles and it was painful but almost felt easier to go faster but at the same time I felt stupid that I was going to hit a wall. I stopped for about 20 seconds, downed my gu, chased it with water, and left my fanny pack to go kill the last 5 miles.
Then, at mile 15, a cramp hit me like a brick in the face. It was so bad. All I could do was think about it. I was breathing deep trying to get oxygen to the area, but that was not helping. It felt like it was debilitating so I tried harder. I didn't want to lose my time, and while doing that, I was going faster. This was stupid and probably just made the cramp worse, but I kept thinking that the faster I ran, the sooner the pain would be over so I ran my heart out. I was doing a lot of out and back and I kept passing the same homeless man and he said "Girl, you run too much" I thought that was funny, and I finished off the last mile at 7:13 pace. Like what?
I don't know what happened today, but I know that the Lord was watching over me for sure. Tanner said that he prayed and prayed for me during quiet time because he was so worried with me out there, in the cold, sick, and running 18 miles. I knew though that I had to do it mentally so that I knew I could do this marathon in less than one month. And, I'm so glad I did.
For the love of running,