Last Saturday I set out to run a nice bike route near my home. It’s mostly flat and would lead through a forest, some suburbs, the countryside and canals.
As I’m training for a 6h run in July, I needed to add some extra distance to my long run. This route was 44k, so perfect!
As you all know, preparation is everything for running this kind of distance and durations, so I layed out everything I needed to make sure I had enough supplies.
The weather got me doubting what to wear but I settled for my Tribesports outfit.
The short sleeves could end up being a problem, but I took my chances.
The route started about 2 miles away from my doorstep, so I took the bike there. An extra 4 miles wasn’t exactly what I needed at this point and in the end it would give me the opportunity to ride the stiffness out at the way home.
At the start there was a nice sign with the entire route mapped on it, so after a quick snap of it for some aid (you never knew…) I set out.
The first 21k/13mi passed at a reasonable pace. I ran consistent (6min/km=9.65min/mile) which was the pace I hoped to average on in the end.
Combined with a heart rate between 130 & 135 I felt good and strong.
The route was changing enough and pretty enough to be interesting, which helps a lot on these looong runs.
After the first half I felt my energy sapping.
The plan was to eat a date every 2km and something stronger (chocolate, meli-koek, piece of gingerbread) every 8-9km, but I felt I needed to adjust this to every 5-6km or I would be drained way before the end.
At about 30-35k I felt everything getting harder and harder.
My hip joints were getting sore and my knees were getting more sensitive. The breathing and the muscles however were still cooperating very well.
This all changed at about 38k.
I hit the wall. It wasn’t a big wall, but it was a wall none the less. My emergency caramel gel were promptly put into my mouth along with some gingerbread and a good deal of water and after struggling about 15min I felt it got slightly better.
But the best was behind me… I already knew at about 35k I would end up doing more than 44k (I was back on familiar terrain) and the last 8k I was struggling.
Not that I was totally kaput, but my heart rate was consistently at about 140 and my pace had dropped almost 30s per km.
To add to my “luck” the weather started getting worse, wind started swelling and was in my face, I got into a rain shower (short one, about 5 minutes) and I because of this all, my arms were getting cold. (this may sound more dramatic than it was.)
But I just kept going and ended at about 46.5k.
I ended up eating/drinking:
- 40gr of oatmeal with 250ml water and 1.5 bar of black chocolate for breakfast
- 22 dades during my course
- 2.5 bars of black chocolate during my course
- 4 pieces of gingerbread
- 3 meli cookies.
- 2l of water (slightly too little, my head hurt in the end)
- 0.5l of water during my stretching
- 1 bar of chocolate during my stretching
- 0.5l of recovery drink (protein)
- 1 recovery bar (protein + carbs)
The aftermath is great, yesterday I wasn’t all that sore, but I was tired.
Today the same, no soreness, but I could have used some more sleep… But tonight I’m aiming at another 20k, heavy week 2 out of 3 is starting!
PS: If you’re interested in live updates, you can always follow me on twitter…
How was your long run? Seen some nice things during?
Ever ran a layed out route (for bikers)?
Awesome effort and a massive amount of food!! I must be under eating on my long runs. Just out of interest, have you tried no breakfast runs? How did you find them if you have?
I find that my food intake grows exponentially once I break the ~20miles barrier.
That’s about my threshold for ‘no breakfast’ as well.
My long runs usually are ‘no breakfast’ runs, since I don’t like going out on a full stomach, but breaking a certain distance/duration I just need the energy from it.
I love the fact that you cross a the BE/NL border on this run. As soomeone interested in the EU etc for work I would get very excited about that on a run, bit tricky here in the UK though! Also just looked at your starting to run blog post – great advice, thanks
I found it excited enough to stop and take a picture as well ^^
I’m glad you like my ‘starting to run’ post!
Interesting choice, eating dates during the run. Have you had any problems due to their fiber content?
People have warned me that the fiber content could cause problems after eating a lot of them or for a long period (+4h counts as a long period imo), but I did not have any problems whatsoever.
But I think you should build it up to see where your threshold is.
I like dates as a natural source instead of gels (to put into context why I eat them)