Monday, March 1, 2010



I’m still alive and kickin’ after yesterday’s pseudo-half marathon feeling no worse for wear. Certainly I’ve felt far worse after a Sunday run than I do today.

Completing 23km is a major milestone for me. Prior to yesterday my longest run as 18km. Finding myself hurt last week while trying to get in a 19km run was a major bummer, nagging doubt started to play mind games waiting to get in to my physio appointment. It was a long week of over-thinking.

As a runner you tend to get lots of advice. Some of it is quite good. Some of it is absolute crap. Some of the good advice I know I should be doing but it’s like asking for directions. Testosterone just doesn’t roll that way. I’m learning, albeit slowly, and I did quite a few things different yesterday.

  • As suggested by my physiotherapist, I had a heated beanbag on my injured left thigh before running.
  • I started out slow. Really, really slow for the first 10km.
  • I hydrated on the run with Amino Vital Endurance and I fueled on the run with Gu Chomps
  • I wore my YakTrax even though I was sure that the bulk of the run would be on clear pavement.
  • I didn’t push too hard when the going got tough near the end. I swallowed my pride and walked when I couldn’t make it through the snow and up the hill. 
Post run I also tried something new. I took an Epsom salt bath and then stretched (some in the bath) and continued stretching while waiting for the start of the hockey game.

This morning there was some muscle stiffness in the calves. The right ankle wasn’t too bad. No major pains anywhere. The more I’m able to get up from my desk and move around the better I feel. I did pop a couple of Motrin that expired in December 2008 (I forgot the new bottle at home) just to take the edge off. I’m sure that sitting in a cold office every day doesn’t help my recovery.

Today I’m resting. It’s hard but I’m fighting the urge to go to the gym and spin the legs out for 30 minutes. I’ll think about that for Tuesday morning. The real test will be Tuesday night’s 6km Tempo run. Bob and I had a great one two weeks ago. I’m curious to see just how much I’ve really recovered. It’s way too soon to push the left leg in the cold, even if it is just less than 30 minutes. Of course with my luck it will be raining Tuesday night. I’m looking at a pair of CW-X Insulator tights but Holy Hanna they are $160 (plus shipping). Still that’s cheaper than therapy. The sad thing is that hopefully I won’t need them in another six weeks. Its March, the worst of winter is finally behind us. Four weeks of unsettled weather and then another four of cold miserable rain. Where, oh where did I put my rose coloured glasses?


Finola said...

I need to start bringing something for rehydrating now on my longer runs. I haven't done this before. I will check out the stuff you mentioned above - were you happy with it?
And congrats on your long run!

Jeff said...

I picked up the 5 pack to give it a try.

It tastes quite pleasant, very much like lemon ice tea.

The first time I tried it was on my abbreviated run, Sunday was the second package. I didn't bonk from lack of energy, and that's a significant change from previous longer runs. I didn't play hockey the night before the long run that may have been a mitigating factor I'll have to consider. I've got three more packages with 26/19/29km runs the next three Sundays.

Based on how I feel today, I'd have to agree with much of what they say on there "science" page.

A single packet runs about $4 so I wouldn't continue to buy in small quantities.

I'm still on cloud nine that I ran 23 km and survived. Based on the week I had, I wasn't expecting to be able to complete much more than 16km and then barely live to tell the tale. We'll see if I feel the same after the 26er this Sunday.

Finola said...

Thanks Jeff, for all of the info. It's most helpful.
So does this product hydrate as well, or do you have to carry some water too? What was the volume of the liquid?

Jeff said...

My Fuel Belt (Revenge) holds three 8 ounce bottles. One packet makes 20 ounces (591 ml). I filled two bottles for the 23 km run. I'll likely dilute a bit more and use all three bottles as the mileage creeps higher.

The fourth bottle on my belt is for gel (it hangs upsidedown) I'll experiment with gels shortly.

There are electroltyes mixed in Amino Vital so it should work well for rehydrating on your longer runs. I am hoping that as the weather (hopefully) warms up we'll set up water stops to augment what we're carrying. 24 ounces of fluid won't be enough over 30 km.

Finola said...

Thanks - Great info!