So yesterday was not a great day food wise which turned out to be a bad mistake considering today I ran approx 16km at 5.30am.
I work for a great digital marketing company in the city and every now and again they order takeaway for the office. They ordered Thai in and I couldn’t resist and then as it was someone’s birthday they bought Cheesecake Shop Black Forest Gateaux – how could I refuse ?? (Ok I should have not had as much as I did!). Then last night I had lasagne when my husband and I went out for dinner – boy was I stuffed like a turkey!!
So I got up at 4.45am this morning and met the girls for a run and was fine until about 40 minutes in and then the gurgles started! I had to tell the girls to go and ended up having to squat in some sort of foresty area and luckily had a very small amount of toilet tissue!
I know this sounds gross but trust me in my 9/10 years or so of running I have had many a toilet dilemma, including in the middle of a marathon in Germany having to squat in what I thought was a secluded area and public land and it turned out to be very public and someone’s back garden! Luckily I don’t understand too much German and just managed to say ‘Danke’ and race off. When in the UK I don’t think there was a park in London that I hadn’t had to squat in one of its bushes at some point!
Running isn’t a glamorous sport really, especially when you are running for 3 hours and have a sensitive stomach or have eaten the wrong foods the day before, so any long distance runners that say they have never had to make a mercy dash somewhere are lying! (do correct me if I am wrong!) – even Paula Radcliffe in 2005 famously stopped nearing the end of the London Marathon and had to go to the toilet very publicly _ what made me astonished the next day in the news was that the press almost sidelined that she had won the race and the whole article they wrote was about did she pee or did she poo!
What I have learned from my time running when it comes to food, drink and running – (although I don’t always remember or stick to it i.e. yesterday!) is:
1. Don’t eat anything too spicy or heavy the night before a run!
2. Especially on race days don’t eat anything your body hasn’t been used to eating i.e. don’t suddenly change brand in your milk or something that may affect your stomach
3. When running a marathon, find out what brand the gels or sports drinks will be on the day and either get used to using them before the race or take your own that you are used to
4. Alcohol and coffee dehydrate me so I don’t drink in the lead up to a race especially the night before! and I make sure I drink plenty of water too as dehydration can cause diarrhea
5. In the lead up to a race as well as practising what running clothes are comfortable and suitable do the same with food. I generally eat pasta the night before – not just because it is high carbs but I have a sensitive stomach and I know I am ok with pasta – not so much with potatoes….and then on the day I will have my oats – my body is used to this now, and I do this in my training and have never had problems on a race day.
Further articles of interest