How to fuel your training runs before The Big Half
A healthy, balanced diet should be your first priority when you start preparing for any running event. However, as you ramp up the miles during training sessions ahead of next month’s Big Half, you should start thinking about the fuel you'll need to take on during your runs – and that’s where specialist sports nutrition comes in.
Sports nutrition products cover everything from drinks and gels to bars, tablets and sweets. Figuring out what products work best for you will become a key element of your training once you start to run for longer than 60 to 90 minutes at a time.
By trying a variety of products in good time, you'll be able to identify the right ones for you and have a sound fuelling and hydration plan in place when The Big Half rolls around. Leave it until the last minute and it could be too late to find out that something doesn’t suit you!
However you decide to fuel your Big Half challenge, our partner Lucozade Sport has got you covered with a simple strategy for success...
Try Lucozade Sport in training
Lucozade Sport and Lucozade Sport gels will be available along The Big Half route, so it makes sense to try out these products in training before the big day. You could also test some alternatives and carry these with you on Event Day if you prefer.
Experiment on longer runs
We store carbohydrates in the body as glycogen. When we run for longer durations, we tap into this glycogen store for the energy that keeps us moving. As our store of glycogen begins to reduce, it is recommended that we take on extra carbohydrates during training to keep them topped up. If you deplete your glycogen store, you'll be out of energy and your run could be over before you reach the Finish Line – and we want to avoid this situation!
The amount of carbohydrate you consume to keep your body working well will come down to personal preference, which you’ll discover as you experiment with different fuel during your training. However, the experts at Lucozade Sport recommend you consume between 30g and 60g of carbohydrate per hour during endurance exercise such as half marathon running.
Calculate your carbs
Don't worry – this isn’t as tricky as it sounds! In practical terms, you could get your 30g to 60g of carbohydrate by sipping on a 500ml Lucozade Sport drink, which delivers between 32 and 33g of carbohydrate per bottle (depending on flavour), or by consuming a Lucozade Sport Dual-Fuel Energy Gel with water, which provides 30g of carbohydrate per 45g sachet.