It isn’t always necessary to fuel optimally for every single run. Shorter runs (generally up to 45 minutes) you can get away with just fuelling before and after. However, optimal fuelling is necessary for key training sessions and race days. Remember if you don’t put energy in for your body to use whilst running it will either turn to burning fat (which is ok but makes you slow) or can actually break down your muscle as an energy source (which is not good!) Or worse, you many experience the dreaded bonk and run out of energy completely. It is always better to provide your body with some carbohydrates to prevent this.
The general rule of thumb is to consume around 1g of carbohydrate per minute to optimally fuel a long run. This may sound a lot but when you break it down it’s actually easy to achieve.
An OTE Energy Gel contains 20g of carbohydrates and an OTE Energy Drink Sachet mixed with 500ml of water contains 40g of carbohydrates so that would give you 60g to fuel you for the first hour.
If you are constantly forgetting to fuel during training why not set a beeper on you watch or phone to go off for every 15 minutes to remind me to take a drink? This is also a something you can carry forward to your racing. It is always wise to start a race with a strategy that you have tried and tested in training and will eventually become second nature.
Try using a fuel belt to carry your essentials. You can get belts that hold smaller bottles making it easier to run with. Try filling one with OTE Blackcurrant Energy Drink and one with OTE Lemon & Lime Energy Drink and try alternating between the two.
This can work as a little tactic to break the time down, for example if it’s a 2.5hr run that means on 15mins, 45min, 1hr15, 1hr45 and 2hr15 sip blackcurrant flavour drink and on 30min, 1hr, 1hr30, 2hrs sip the lemon and lime flavour.
If you prefer not to run with a bottle or need to refill bottles during a long run, you can run on a loop and either have a friend or family member pass you fresh bottles, or set the loop to run past your house to quickly refill. Another idea is to hide a fresh bottle in a bush or wall on route for you to pick up.
OTE Energy Gels have a dual packaging system that means you can chose whether you want to sip or gulp the gel. For runners, tearing to sip means you can have a mouthful and save the rest for later. The packaging is designed so the gel only comes out when pressure is applied.
Each gel contains 20g of carbs so are easy to calculate your fuel requirements and the caffeine options will give you a much needed kick towards the end of long runs or races if you need it!
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