Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Fueling for the Distance: Guest post with Dr. Susan Kleiner.

Earlier this year, Dr. Susan Kleiner joined us for a guest post on hydration. Today, I'm very pleased that she's agreed to share information on proper fueling, right in time for the peak fall training season!

Fueling For The Distance

As we move into fall, most of us get very serious about training. It’s such a great time to get outside to run long distances; the temperatures are just perfect almost everywhere in the country: not too hot and not too cold. Fueling up for long distance fall sports takes some knowledge of your own body and what’s available to you.

While everyone’s body is a little different, there are some basic principles to fueling to maximize your efforts.
1. Hydration is the most important. We fatigue quickly as we dehydrate, no matter how well you’ve eaten. And you’ll never maximize your training time without enough fluids on board. While water is great throughout most of the day, it isn’t enough if you exercise more than 60 minutes.

You can also use various types of fluids not only for hydration, but for their other ingredients that may enhance hydration, fueling, and endurance. Sports drinks during exercise are obvious. They enhance hydration, keep you drinking, and add a small amount of carbohydrates to add to your fuel source. A brand new carbohydrate supplement, VitargoS2, is causing a sensation in the long-distance world of sports (www.genr8speed.com). It passes into the bloodstream much more quickly than any other carb supplement without bloating. So you can double your energy pipeline for the long haul. It has great research behind it and there is nothing else like it.

Milk products before and after exercise are great sources of carbohydrates and whey protein that work together to promote fueling and refueling, hydration and re-hydration, minimize muscle damage and promote muscle recovery and growth.

Caffeine before exercise has been shown to enhance endurance by lowering our rate of perceived exertion. In other words, we don’t notice how hard we’re really working, and so we continue to pour it on long after we otherwise would have slowed our pace or intensity. While many people turn to coffee, colas and energy drinks that contain caffeine, none of those beverages contain the full range of support for multiple systems in the body as does Awaken by solixir, a unique new beverage (www.solixir.com). The caffeine content in Awaken is very low (30 mg), but you get the same sense of energy through the natural mix of botanicals that interact with many different energy systems in the body. I have switched from coffee to Awaken Orange Maté by solixir, and so have many of my clients.

2. Eat breakfast. There just is no substitute for breaking your overnight fast. A bowl of whole grain cereal, fruit, milk and an egg is an easy combination that will make you feel great.

3. Eat regularly and enjoy it. Between meal snacks are critical to keeping your blood sugar levels, your energy and your mood even all day long. Try sticking to real food rather than engineered snacks like bars. Fruit and cheese, dried fruit and nuts, vegetables and hummus or peanut butter, a glass of milk or a latté, are all great choices.

4. Recover after exercise. Within 15-30 minutes after exercise your body is primed to recover at the fastest rate. Drinking a smoothie with whey protein and Vitargo S2, or even chocolate milk, are ideal strategies to give your body the protein and carbohydrate that it needs to refuel, recover and grow, helping you prepare for the next day’s workout. There is no substitute for this immediate nutritional boost.

Within two hours after exercise have a robust meal. This is still part of your recovery regime. I also add Restore by solixir. The refreshing pomegranate ginger beverage supports immune function and continues your recovery process.
While this isn’t an exhaustive list, if you accomplish these four strategies every day, you’ll feel so much better, and you’ll notice a huge boost in your energy, your endurance, and your performance. Eating breakfast, eating regularly and following a recovery plan will keep you fueled well throughout the day, avoiding the uncontrolled appetite surges that often happen during the hard training season.

Have fun and run long!

Dr. Susan Kleiner
Great tips! I need to work on proper fueling to keep those "uncontrolled appetite surges" at bay. I don't know about you, but as I get more serious about my training, I get hungrier. And then I worry about eating too much and gaining weight right when that's the last thing I need to do. For me, though, I think the hydration principle is key. Since Dr. Kleiner's last post in May, I've worked hard to improve my hydration and I feel like it is paying off. I definitely notice when I'm not fully hydrated; aside from the usual reactions (fatigue, headaches, poor performance), I also get hungrier!

I hope these tips will help you as you move through the fall season. They will certainly help me as I seek my 5K PR in October (and I can use all the help I can get . . . ).

If you would like to learn more about Dr. Kleiner, check out her web site, Power Eating.

Have a great day, everyone!

~ Felice

11 comments:

Katie said...

Wow! What a great post... Just ran across your blog and I love it! I had to print this post out to keep in my files :) Thanks for this! I look forward to following you.

J said...

I really liked these posts - they are so informative! Sometimes is all about how we eat and drink that makes the race go well!

Grace said...

Totally agree with point#1 that's for sure. Yesterday I didn't drink anything before my quick 2 mile run and ended up having to walk. Today I drank a glass of water before my 2 mile run and felt great.

Marlene said...

That's some good info. Thanks for sharing!

(I've also been working on staying well hydrated all day every day and definitely notice a difference in my running and overall well-being.)

kara said...

I'm always trying to find a balance. To much water and I have to make pit stops...
Interesting post - thanks!

Denise said...

Great post...stuff we all need to know about.

Meg Runs said...

Very helpful post, thanks!

joyRuN said...

Helpful 411! Thanks :)

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