Ahhh! I am really loving having Fridays now as my long run day. The way my schedule is, that day is a quiet one where I can focus on me and recover so it was obvious it should turn into my long run day. Saturdays and Sundays have always been busy for us as a family. Having the weekly big task for marathon training done before the weekend feels so good!
Analyzing your splits from a long run
I don’t normally posts my splits, but I will from yesterday’s long run. The run wasn’t actually that long, it was 7 miles, but 7 miles is 7 miles. I don’t shirk any running distance – you earn every mile. My focus going into that run was to really aim for what Coach Erin has advised – slower. Focus on quality and endurance. I was actually surprised when I looked at my splits because I was faster than I had thought I was running. And I seriously was focusing on slowing down!
1 9:44.4 (thought I was going much slower!)
2 9:23.9 (could not tell I was “this fast”)
3 10:14.8 (no clue)
4 9:51.1 (I was starting to coast, feeling comfy)
5 11:08.6 (massive headwind, I knew this mile was rough and slow)
6 9:50.3 (excited about almost being done?)
7 10:09.4 (finally landed that pace I was shooting for the whole time)
I kind of took away that a) a comfortable “slow” pace for me is 9:45-ish and b) I obviously need to understand that slow means MORE SLOW. I was very comfortable on the run and my evening meal of my Korean-style Tacos seemed to have been very good fuel. The whole and healthy food I made from scratch had a good combination of protein/carb/sodium to prepare for a next day long run. I like to watch my sodium and sugar levels, but now and then with endurance running you can use a little boost of sodium. Not outrageous, just a bit more, just for the long run. Then get back to low-key levels the rest of the week.
Safety of protein powders
Speaking of health, I was very bummed to come across a disturbing article in Consumer Reports discussing levels of lead and arsenic in many of the popular protein powders. I don’t really know what to think; all I know is that I am now jaded by it. With half marathon training, I don’t think I need protein powder anymore to help my body tackle more rigorous exercise. My body seems accustomed to the higher intensity now and I can get all of my protein and hydration needs met through whole foods without too much trouble. But, my body is not used to full marathon training and I know I need some extra help along the way with protein, recovery, and calories. I tend to get gaunt quick if I don’t pay attention. I don’t know yet how I’m going to approach all of this “fueling” specifically with full marathon training. What I do know I will continue to do, however, is:
1. Eat as much non-processed food as possible.
2. Get good proteins from milk, egg, lean meat, and other whole food sources.
3. Stay hydrated well with my good filtered water (under-sink filtration from home, no store bought bottles).
“35 percent of the global population — mostly people with European ancestry — can digest lactose in adulthood without a hitch.” via NPR
I am pretty sure I am in that 35% genetic group. I have always drank milk my entire life, whether in cereal or as a drink, and I always have done a combo of milk and/or almond milk after my runs. I’ll sometimes mix in protein powders for some extra boost. Other than that, I only take water on my runs and Hammer Gels if I plan to go long. I will add in electrolyte drinks when the higher heat of summer comes, or during a race if I’m needing it, but I try to not take it unless I really need it. That has been it for me. I’m not lactose intolerant and seem to do fine with whey so I’ve never had a need to steer clear. I do deal with digestive issues, but have had success narrowing down the field as to what affects me: cruciferous veggies, beans, and high bad fats (like greasy burgers, etc).
What do you think about fueling as a full marathoner? How do you meet your more intense fuel needs and stay on top of it?