It’s fair to say that I have made lots of mistakes. I have also learned a lot too. I have read helpful advice and lots that is so specific and precise to be useless unless you are OCD when it comes to portions.
I have never really taken fuelling seriously. I just eat a lot. That’s about it.
Before my first Brighton marathon Susie and I went to a restaurant in the next village. It served all kinds of different cuisines and I felt safe choosing a surf and turf. Safe in the knowledge that I would be burning off lots of calories on the marathon and steak is supposedly one of those great choices on the menu that doesn’t come with lots of hidden calories.
As I was eating the meal I picked up a prawn on my fork and devoured it. It didn’t taste right. I’ve had plenty of experiences in my life to know that I was headed for a serious bout of food poisoning. Of course I finished the meal. Of course I didn’t complain. I did spend the next three days in bed. I can recommend this course of action as a great weight loss plan but not the greatest preparation for a debut marathon. By the time of the marathon I had lost 5 pounds in edit? and simply didn’t have enough energy in my body. It failed me at 18 miles after which I stumbled my way to the end. I had given myself seriously bad stomach cramps by stuffing gels and anything else that I could get my hands on during the race.
That gave me an aversion to gels until when I ran Wealden waters. I was with Sarah and Barbara. It was early morning and we had already covered 60 miles. I came to with a start. Apparently I had been having a great conversation with Sarah explaining that I was awake and that I wasn’t asleep. I kept this up for five minutes and all the time walking along with my eyes shut. I took a salted caramel gu energy gel and woke up instantly. After that I was hooked and no longer associated gels with stomach cramps. It helped that I wasn’t eating warm fruit flavoured goop too.
Isle of Wight marathon I ran with only peanuts and jelly babies. They work perfectly.