Monday, April 7, 2008

BIg Race Countdown

Diet during the week before the big race should have a huge effect on performance, so I am being extra vigilant this week as to what goes in my body. The aim of this is to fully replenish my glycogen stores and to keep well hydrated.

To keep hydrated, I intend to drink 3 litres of water a day for the next week. I am quite happy drinking water, but I am trying to drink a carbo sports drink every day as well to keep up my carbohydrate intake. I am currently sitting at the desk with a bottle of Taut, which is a little lighter on the stomach than lucozade sport, but still contains 25.5g carbohydrate in a 500ml bottle. I am also going to try to stay off the booze this week, although I expect I'll have a glass or two of red wine the night before the marathon to help me sleep!

In terms of diet, there is an argument for completely depleting your body of glycogen by doing a long run on the Sunday before the marathon and then just eating mainly from Sunday to Wednesday. This means that your body is then ready to store an extra supply of carbohydrate when you eat a high carbohydrate diet during the last three days before the marathon. (See the discussion on the Runner's World website with former London Marathon winner, Mike Gratton Hard Training Q&As: Nutrition). I am not going to do this as I am not prepared to risk doing such a long run so near to the marathon and I don't want to avoid carbs for three days. I did 10 miles on Sunday and am just going to try to eat my normal high carb diet and taper my running. During the last three days, I am going to try to eat about 4-500g carbs per day (about 7-10g/kg body weight is recommended) and just do a couple of short, slow runs.

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