I also used this morning's run to trial out a new fuel experiment. I'm not very good (ok, I'm rubbish in fact) at fuelling during a run, other than the hurriedly-try-not-to-choke-as-I-attempt-to-drink-on-the-run gulps of water and sports drinks at the aid stations along the way of most races. (I am excellent at pre-fuelling, post-fuelling, and all throughout the day fuelling though.) However, I think this is definitely what let me down in my first (and only to date) full marathon back in 2008, where I learnt that 'the wall' is not mythical and that mid-race fuel is to be respected and consumed early enough). So, am aiming to do a whole lot better this time around, on January 2nd, and thus this morning's trial was more for that race's training than for the Shanghai half (where the water and sports drinks should be enough).
I took a pack of Skittles with me, as I've read on another runner's website that this works for her (and being a relatively small city in China, I am yet to find any sort of specific running shop or outdoor shop that sells those fancy energy gels such as Gu). Now I know, yes, yes, Skittles and other sweets are not the same fuel per se as glucose gels and lollies, and the nutritionist in me should know that I'm choosing sucrose over glucose, and thus initially would surely have a slowing down/detrimental effect as the initial insulin response takes effect, etc etc. HOWEVER, they seemed to work pretty well! I was worried about eating on the run / choking / feeling sick etc. (if I eat usually anywhere up to 3 hours before a run, then I get bad heartburn and feel like I'm going to vomit during the run, so again a reason why I'm a fan of early morning runs) but this didn't happen and they were easy to chew whilst running (slowly).
Does anyone have any other great fuel tips/advice??
Maybe it was the skittles that gave me a great run, or maybe it was the beautiful (if you don't look too closely) river that I run beside most days. There is just something about water hey. Whether it be a river, an ocean, or a big lake - I seem to yearn for it and seek it out: to run and mediate-on-the-move beside it. There is something really calming, restorative, and even powerful about a body of water and of running alongside it I think. This is the river that I will soon be running alongside, if only for a short section of the race (which starts on The Bund in beautiful Shanghai):
Also, stay tuned for more 'beautiful China' photos, coming soon! Think I need to add a page to this website just for beautiful China photos, for those who may have stumbled across this actually looking for information about CHINA and not just what so far has seemed to be mainly me rambling about running training. So, as ever, slowly slowly with this technology malarkey, as a power nap (crawling back into bed) is now beckoning.
Hope everyone's weekends are fantastic, and good luck to a few that I know who have races tomorrow! (You know who you are). :)