This Sunday I’m racing a 20 miler race at the Lake Michigan Trail Marathon in Cudahy, WI. I haven’t raced in a while and I am already excited. I am not going to lie, I am a little disappointed and really wanted to run the full marathon. While discussing this with my coach, Dave, he reminded me that my goal race this season is trying to Boston Qualify at the Lakefront Marathon. So while I could finish this trail marathon, would this help or harm what I need to get to Boston at LFM? The answer is the recovery after a marathon would hinder my speed work. SO, our meeting in the middle was that I could attempt race pace at the 20 miler to see how it would go. Thank goodness for coaches.
While talking about this race, many people have asked me what I do to race prep in terms of eating, packing, etc. So here is how I map out my schedule. This has been my tried and true race prep template for myself with some mild adjustments when necessary.
Nutrition: I’m including only the big meals here. There are normal snacks in here, usually sticking to veggies/nuts/hummus but sometimes ends up in a sweet or two.
Disclaimer: I am not a nutrition expert, but I stayed at a Holiday Inn before a run once, so I feel pretty prepared. However in all seriousness: this is what I have found that works for ME. It’s taken a long time to get here and I’m still trying new things. Some runners have huge feelings on carb loading and when, but this is what works for me. Most importantly, I always stress that you should keep as much as possible similar during training to see what works best for YOU. Need more help? Ask our Dietitian Gina for your long run and race prep!
2 Days out:
B: Normal. Typically I’ll do an egg/veggie scramble or some Chia Seed Pudding
L: Lean Protein + veggies. Normal lunch
D: **MY FAVORITE MEAL** Steak or burger (no bun), sweet potato, veggies.
1 Day out:
B: **Bigger Breakfast** usually a big omelette with breakfast potatoes
L: Light salad with lean protein. Grains or carbohydrates serving.
D: Lean protein with Light salad or veggies. Grains or carbohydrates serving.
Pre-race: 2 eggs, 2 pieces of gluten free toast, 1/4 cup coffee,
During race: Rehydrate gel packet every 45 minutes, SMALL water sip every 10 minutes.
Post Race: honestly, I’m usually not very hungry but I always try to get in a balance of carbs and proteins.
**Why do I do the big meals 2 days out and the breakfast the morning before and not huge meal for the dinner right before the race? Well honestly, its all about the BMs. I sometimes have a hard time going to the bathroom prior to the race. I know that my body has had ample time to store the calories and nutrients from the two previous days to carry me through the race. Once again, this is just me here. Not everyone fits this.