To carbo-load or not to carbo-load. That is the question.
When preparing for my last marathon that didn’t really happen, I didn’t bother to carbo-load. I used to be better about this when I first started running and racing but now am more freaked out by packing on even more weight in the days leading up to a race rather than being as fueled as humanly possible. Now that I get a do-over, I am wondering if maybe I should put a little more effort into this aspect of racing. Last time I only made it to 15 miles before they called the race but I was already starting to feel a little “wall” popping up… and I honestly don’t know how much longer I would have been able to run in that state. Maybe it had nothing to do with carbo-loading but just maybe it did…
I’ve been doing a little google research these last few days (scientific, I know!) but it’s leading me to think maybe I SHOULD give myself every advantage I can in trying to cross this stinking marathon finish line finally. I found one article that was especially convincing from Run Your BQ. I would be joking if I thought I was capable of running a BQ race but I don’t think that exempts me from being able to use some of their tips to run MY best marathon!
According to the article, I should aim to consume 500-700g of carbohydrates for 2-3 days before the race. That’s a TON of carbs… I normally eat about 200ishg I would guess. If there is any truth in this theory, I would pretty much be setting myself up to fail by only consuming 200-300gs the few days before. So I think I am going to give it a shot. Worst case scenario I gain 5 more lbs from marathon training and it does nothing to help. Best case scenario, it actually does something and helps me come race day. I don’t really think the worst case scenario would be the end of the world. What’s another 5lbs at this point??
So my plan consists of the following:
Thursday: Increase carbs to 400-450g, light workout
Friday: Increase carbs to 500-550, light workout (1-2 mile jog/walk)
Saturday: Increase carbs to 600-700, no workout
Sunday: Race Day Breakfast, per usual
I’m not really sure if I could even fit that many grams of carbs in my belly so I am going to have to drink some of those carbs if I am going to really hit 700 on Saturday. Doing the math, 700g carbs=2,800 calories of straight carbs!! Yikes! This could be interesting but if I am really having trouble getting all those carbs in, I won’t worry too much about it but those are my goals! Come race day, I guess we will see if this helps anything or not. But it will probably make my glutenous tendencies very happy
Bring on the pasta, muffins, bread and cereals!