Marathon Nutrition Strategy: how much should I eat on the run?
No simple answer here, sorry about that. We're all different and age, weight and gender all play a huge part, as do race day conditions, sleep, stress and experience - the more you've run, the more efficient your metabolism and the better you'll know how to manage it.
Yet despite there being no set answer, this has never stopped sports nutrition companies from prescribing ever-increasing doses of their products.
Marathon Nutrition Strategy (as recommended by other sports nutrition manufacturers):
As an example, take the London marathon guide that has helpfully just dropped through the 33Shake letterbox (a couple of us are official pacers this year). Here, courtesy of a major sports nutrition company comes a guide to marathon nutrition.
What do they suggest?
That you consume a LOT of their products. This means more sugar than you can shake a fat kid in a candy store at.
How much? Brace yourself. This remember is for just one marathon...
- One litre of sports drink. Main ingredient? Glucose syrup (sugar). Also contains Aspartame (sweetener, linked to enough health disasters to fill a phone book). 280 calories
- Four gels. Main ingredient? maltodextrin (sugar), then - after water - fructose (more sugar). 492 calories
- Two energy bars. Included in the ingredients are sugar, glucose syrup (sugar), oligofructose (sugar), fructose (sugar), glucose (sugar), sucrose (sugar). 350 calories
- Two bags of jelly beans. Main ingredient? Sugar, followed in second place by glucose syrup (sugar). These really could not look more like candy if they were, well, candy. Apart from the price, which is five times higher. 226 calories.
- One recovery bar. Ingredients include glucose syrup (sugar), oligofructose (sugar), partially inverted sugar syrup (sugar). 171 calories.
Are they mental? That's a family meal's worth of sugar.
How any nutritionist could recommend this to anyone, let alone to dedicated athletes is beyond us. These after all are the same ingredients behind today's health epidemic of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity and more. They didn't suddenly get healthy just because someone wrote 'sports nutrition' on the packet.
At no point in this guide is building your metabolic efficiency and fat burning abilities suggested as helpful or even relevant.
But there's no money to be made telling you that.
Because if you did build your fat burning abilities and tuned into your body's needs for nutrition rather than shovelling down products you don't need based on a schedule made up by a sales team, you'd be running on a fraction of the product and they'd make a ton less money.
But you'd be happier, healthier and - most importantly - faster. Which is why at 33Shake we do things differently.
Marathon Nutrition Strategy (as recommended by us):
At 33Shake we'd rather see more people running happy, healthy and fast than chowing down endless product they don't need before blowing up, throwing up and worse.
Which is why we're quite happy to tell you - building your fat burning abilities and listening to your body is the key to perfecting your nutrition for marathon training and racing. Perfect these and you'll nail race day like never before, you'll never fall prey to stomach trouble, and you'll be in total control of your marathon nutrition at all times.
It's also why we make all of our products out of 100% natural wholefood ingredients, for serious performance with serious health because you can't have one without the other.
Here's to your marathon training and that new PB ;)
Marathon coming up? Check out our Pre and Post Workout Shakes for perfect nutrition before and after your big race, and our pioneering Chia Energy Gels for power, speed and great taste, all with zero stomach issues
©33Shake, Fueling limitless performance since 2012
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