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Ask the Elites: How do you fuel during a long race or workout?

Ask the Elites: How do you fuel during a long race or workout?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015 - 2:12pm
How do you fuel during a long race or workout?

Photo by Flickr user the US Army.

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Lisa Chicolte of MCRRC: “Honey Stingers Cherry Blossom chews...yum!”

Nicolas Crouzier of MCRRC: "I stick to water and mocha gels. The gels aren't great per se but they do their job."

Dionis Gauvin of MCRRC: “I don't run very many long races, but when I do, I use GU packets.”

David Magida, General Manager of Elevate Interval Fitness and Reebok Spartan Race Pro Team Athlete: "Food is always a tricky thing, and I think 'long' is a very relative term. If your race is 2-3 hours long, fuel will probably be a few energy gels and electrolyte tablets. However, sometimes races are much longer. In events where you start to cover 4+ hours, it doesn’t hurt to have some solid food like a honey stinger wafer or some gummies. When competing in events still longer (think 24+ hours), you want real food. I like things in bar form because they can handle all conditions and digest fairly easily. Cliff bars and granola bars are my leading candidates and surprisingly enough coca cola is INCREDIBLE during these long grueling ultra events. Ask world champion Ironman athlete Chris McCormack--it’s his secret weapon."

Kristi Markowicz of Pacers New Balance: “I have never liked to eat during workouts or long runs, but a little Gatorade definitely helps, especially when it's hot out.”

Christina Papoulias of MCRRC: “I’ll usually drink Nuun or Generation UCAN.  For eating, I prefer a caffeinated GU or Clif Shot Bloks.”

Kaitlin Sheedy of CAR: "During a long run or workout, I stick with water and have been using Hammer Gels for fuel for the last several years. My favorite flavors are espresso for a little caffeine and vanilla. For post-workout, I use Nuun to rehydrate."

Ryan Witters of GRC: "Fortunately for me, I'm not much of an long distance runner.  My race distance of choice ranges between the mile and the 5k.  This means that my workouts typically don't require much rehydration.  With that said, each track season I'll run a 20x400m track workout that get's pretty intense.  In order to maintain ample energy and restock crucial electrolytes throughout the workout, I'll drink fruit punch flavored Gatorade between sets."

About the Author

Jamie Corey is a RRCA certified coach and author of RunsterInc.com. Jamie has completed eight marathons, several triathlons and is currently training for her first Ironman. When she isn't trying to find the best bagel in town, she is usually tweeting at @TheRunster.