Marathon Nutrition: Trail Marathon Wales

Following my report on the Trail Marathon Wales, I thought I would detail the nutritional products I had before and during the marathon, what seemed to work well and what could be improved upon

My nutrition for the Trail Marathon Wales

Pre-Run – 07:30

  • Torq – Sundried Banana Bar, 1 bar (65g)
  • Porridge Oats

Pre-Run – 08:00 to 08:30

  • Xtreme Stimulant Energy Drink, High 5

In future I would eat sooner, I think had I eaten at around 06:30-07:00 it would have allowed more time to digest the food, although I didn’t have any real problems because of this.

During the Run – Carried

  • 1 litre of water in a hydration pack
  • Torq gel Rubarb and Custard, 3 gel packs
  • Torq gel Banoffee (Caffeinated) 2 gel packs
  • Zero electrolyte sport drink (Caffeinated), High 5

During the Run – Aid Station

  • Unknown Isotonic drink
  • Banana, quarter

Opting to carry the majority of my nutrition and hydration on me the approach I took with the run nutrition was to have the Torq gels every 45 minutes with the caffeinated gels after the 2 and 4 hour slots, and the water I was constantly sipping throughout. The banana was from one of the aid stations (I think it was around 11 miles) with the isotonic drinks taken at each station that had them (from mile 6 onwards as I recall). I took the High 5 caffeine hit at around mile 20 after picking up a 500ml bottle from one of the final aid stations.

Overall I was fairly pleased with how the nutrition went, given that this was the first long distance race opposed to a training run. My strategy was to take a gel and walk while eating/drinking it to allow for my body to digest it as best it can, rather than try and eat and run which can cause problems when trying to digest foods. I believe I managed to avoid a serious bonk, I was shattered but I kept plodding on and I think this was due to having the foods planned out.

I did start to get stomach aches after probably the 4the gel and something that I will do in the future, particularly for the NDW50 will be to include some solid food rather than just gels and drinks. I think my stomach was crying out for solid food by the latter part of the race and had I had more time to prepare my Pinole recipe I would have taken this and hopefully avoided the aches, as well as keeping the energy levels up.

Post Run – Immediately After

  • Water
  • Syntha 6 Chocolate protein shake

I should have taken on calories in a solid food rather than a shake, maybe a flapjack or something like that would have done the trick. Next time I will have something tasty for the finish, as until I got solid food in my stomach I was feeling quite sick and a bit out of it.

What I did find useful on the run was the Salomon soft flask, which i used to carry the 3 Rubarb and Custard Gels, aswell as some water later on. I have a poor history opening the gels without splitting them and getting it all over me, this avoided that.

Salomon soft flask, allows you to squeeze every drop of gel out of it so no left overs at the bottom

Link to Trail Marathon Race Review: Race Review Trail Marathon Wales

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