One of the things that went really well on race day was my nutrition plan. Everyone says that you need to eat “real food” when you run an ultra and they are right – well, at least to an extent.
Going into the race, I knew the course was split into two identical loops. For each loop, I prepared the following:
– a bottle with 2 scoops of Generation UCan (160 calories)
– one additional scoop of Generation UCan that I carried in an old Nuun container (80 calories)
– one Picky Bar (200 calories)
– five VFuel gels (500 calories)
Therefore, I was carrying nearly 1000 calories per loop or 2000 calories total. That means I needed to get several thousand more calories at the aid stations. Fortunately, there were 11 aid stations spread throughout the course. This means that I needed to take in about 150 to 200 calories per aid station.
Since I was eating Picky Bars and drinking Generation UCan, my stomach was pretty calm. I never had any issues with it throughout the race. Therefore, I felt comfortable eating/drinking anything/everything at the aid stations, although I primarily stuck with GU Brew, watermelon and oranges.
I never bonked due to lack of energy, and looking back, I think I did quite well with nutrition. I did run out of fluids one time – it was between Aid Station 9 and Aid Station 10, near the 34 mile mark. I was moving a bit slower at that point and it was really heating up outside. I actually filled up my bottle (three times) in a river and I’ve lived to tell the tale of it.
What is your favorite food/drink to have during races? Do you think it’s effective?