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Runner Hydration and Fueling Mistakes to Avoid (Coaches Corner)


Runner Hydration and Fueling Mistakes, I’ve made a few… (sing it with me). JK. As we are seeing increasingly warm conditions at the big marathons and with spring, summer, warmer temperatures and new training plans on the horizon,  let’s talk about what NOT to do!

Welcome to Running Coaches Corner! See the bottom of the post for the link up and great articles from my cohosts Lora, Debbie, and Rachel, as well as other bloggers! Continuing on with our April theme of Runner Nutrition! 

Speaking of, the 80 Fresh Giveaway ends tomorrow, as does the 20% off your purchase code! I have loved each meal (check out what I got this weekend!), and I totally recommend you try it if you are struggling with healthy eating and meal planning.

And don’t forget my guest post from Olena’s blog on 5 big pieces of advice for your first half marathon!

Runner Hydration and Fueling Mistakes to Avoid

I feel like we are experiencing a true Global Warming/El Nino time in the big marathons: after several rounds of freezing marathons regardless of the time of year, we are now seeing quite warm conditions at these big races. That is all the more reason to have your hydration and nutrition plan in place!

Runner Hydration and Nutrition Mistakes to avoid! Have your best running and training season ever by avoiding these errors.

As I hope I impressed upon you in this postnow is the time to get your hydration and fueling strategy figured out! The earlier, the better, in my opinion. So let me help you out a bit by telling you what NOT to do when it comes to fueling and hydration on the run.

Assuming that Your Hydration and Fueling will be Provided for You

And yes, I will totally admit to being guilty to part of this because I live in Chicago and during the summer, the water fountains are on. But during training runs, and especially during races, do not take your hydration or fueling for granted. Live in an area where running groups provide water for runners? What about that one time that they pack it up early, or run out, or just aren’t there? What if they don’t have what you like and are used to? Always, always carry sufficient nutrition with you that you are certain you are taken care of. If you find extra stuff while out there, well, congratulations, but don’t assume that your needs will be taken care of for you or you will be left high, dry, and bonking.

Not Taking In Water with Your Carbohydrates

I mentioned this a few weeks ago in my post on hydration and electrolytes, but in order to process carbohydrates, your main source of energy during these long distance bouts, you  must take in water with the carbohydrate. Otherwise, you cannot process those carbs, and you will either be revisiting them in quick fashion, or they will do you no good at all. How much water do you need? Not that much–even a few quick sips of water will be sufficient, or about 1/2 cup water.

Taking in Too Much Water or Too Much Fuel

Why you want to avoid taking in too much water is pretty self explanatory: you don’t want a water baby, or to have to pee the whole time, but you also want to avoid hyponatremia, or too low blood sodium. You only really need about 8 oz of water per 45-60 minutes of activity, but try some of Kelli’s strategies for measuring your hydration levels. 

Why should you be concerned with taking in too much fuel? Because, honestly, your body just doesn’t need it. You might even increase your body’s reliance on carbohydrates, rather than teaching your body to become more selfsufficient and efficient. That said, we all need carbs and water at some point!

Not Trying Your Hydration or Fueling Before You Start Running

Make sure that you can stomach what you are going to be eating or drinking while you are running! Before you try Gu or sports gel for the first time on the run, try it before you run. Trust me, you don’t want to get surprised by something like that in the moment. The first time that I tried a gel while out on the run, I actually bonked really hard because I was so scared that I would bring it back up that I waited too long and couldn’t recover. I didn’t just hit the wall, I waved at that wall from afar. The 1.5 miles that I had to go to get home from there were horrific. 

Not Being Open To Alternative Fueling Options

Gels and gu’s are great, convenient, and easy to consume options, but they are not the only fueling options for runners that are on the market! Running has become such a mainstream sport that there are now tons of options available to you at your local running or sports store. Don’t live by a specialty store? Get creative at your grocery or drugstore! Try dried pineapple, dates, mango if you want to go natural, or candies of your choice (I like Starburst, flavored tootsie rolls, and peppermints). Try ginger chews for sensitive stomachs, and check out what fuels I rely on for more ideas.

Don't make these hydration and nutrition mistakes! #runchat #fitfluential #running Click To Tweet
Probably not a good idea for during you run...

Probably not a good idea for during your run…

Next week will be out last week discussing nutrition and hydration on Running Coaches Corner! Make sure that you link up below or check out the articles for more great content! 

What is your biggest fueling mistake to date?

What questions do you have about fueling and hydration?

I love #Running Coaches Corner! @coachdebbieruns @loramarie03 @runningon_happy Click To Tweet

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