Sunday, September 11, 2011

A great day for 12K

I went to MEC yesterday to get some gels and chews as the training runs are getting longer and longer and so are the "long" runs so I thought it was time to start testing some on-the-go nutrition to refuel.   I also picked up a long sleeve running shirt after feeling the chill in the air last week.   I was mulling over what fuel sources I would test out first.  I was a little reluctant to start with a gel as I have never had anything like it and really didn't know what to expect.  I don't look some foods based on texture, like kiwis, raw tomatoes and oranges so I was a little nervous to try these things.

After breakfast and some puttering around the house I figured it was time to stop stalling and ripped open a pack of the jelly belly beans.  Yup, Jelly Belly makes "healthy" jelly beans lol. They actually tasted pretty good, they were just bigger than the usual gourmet beans they sell. I had about 30 minutes to get ready and head out. I grabbed a package of organic energy chews, a gel, a bottle of Gatorade and a bottle of water to wash down the gel and made my way out the door.

healthiest jelly beans I've ever had!
12km was the goal today, a nice short run compared to the last two weeks.  I headed south down my street to the bike path and tore into the chews.  Hmm, not bad I thought, they reminded my of the fruit chews my husband buys, except these ones are "healthy" not just candy :)  I ate three or so every ten minutes on my walking break and washed them down with the Gatorade.    I finished off the package as I made my way to the north path off Walkers line.
This was the first time I was running and taking additional nutrition during the workout and I really think it made a difference. I think that knowing I only had to go 12km made a difference mentally as well.  I was running faster today though, faster than I have been for a long time.  My heart rate was staying around 167-171 when I was running.  For the past few weeks I was struggling to keep my heart rate at 160.

The time was ticking by and I had gone about an hour when I got the courage to tear open the gel.  It was bizarre, the taste was unexpected and it was thicker than I was expecting.  I consumed it in three attempts not really sure what to make of it.  I also made sure to wash it down with water as it felt like it coated my mouth.

I kept running and was surprised at how much easier it felt today even with the faster pace.  I came off the path and headed over to the track to wrap up my last 3 km before heading home.   The rubber layer was a welcome relief for my legs and I enjoyed the track time today.  I had only two more laps to go when I was starting to get tired but I kept pushing and ran all the way back tot he house.

I ran more than 30secs faster per kilometer today and if that was because of the chews and gels then you better believe I will be using them again! I ended up finishing my 12km in under two hours and that felt great!

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