Well here I am… I started training in June and it’s now October. My marathon is 2 weeks away and I am psyched! I can run farther and faster than I ever thought I would. My abs are getting rock hard as are my arms. My legs are getting super strong and I can climb hills like never before! I love my body and I love what running does for it!
Here are some things I have learned in the last 4 1/2 months:
1. Chia seeds are super fuel for this body. I soak 1/2 cup in about 2 cups water overnight and eat a big fat heaping Tablespoon or more before a run. No added flavors or ingredients, just chia, and I don’t feel it in my belly while running but feel super charged and energized.
2. Bee pollen is a great fuel while running. After about an hour of running I need a little fuel. I other than choose the gel shots and power bars as they are full of stuff I don’t want in my body. So I keep a baggie full of bee pollen in my back pocket and just pour myself a mouthful. I can keep going and feel awesome.
3. Loading on proteins and carbs within 30 minutes of finishing an hour or longer run is crucial for recovery. I’m so happy I figured this out through trial and error and reading the running mags. I don’t eat what they recommend though which is usually bagels and cream cheese or something equally “gooey for the gut”. Instead, here is what I make: A green smoothie w Warrior Food protein Powder. Recipe: 1 banana, 1 piece of fruit such as handful of strawberries (w stems), or nectarine or blueberries, etc. 2 heaping Tbs. Warrior Food Hemp protein Powder, 1 scoop of L-glutamine (for ATP synthesis and muscle rebuilding), a huge handful or 2 of kale, spinach, sprouts or parsley, water to blend, and sometimes some extra green powder like Vitamineral Green or Spirulina and some stevia for my sweet tooth. I like the soy lecithin powder for creaminess and brain function too.
4. So I drink that slowly over the course of an hour after running but start drinking it right when I get home or finish running.
5. Big green salads still rock! I like how light I feel when I eat a salad with avocado, tomatoes, sauerkraut, sprouts, seasoned sunflower seeds (see my book for recipes), drizzle some pumpkin seed oil and sometimes throw some cooked beans in for extra fiber, carbs and protein. I never eat more than 3 fats in a salad or it’s sleepy time for me. I usually limit it to 2. Olives and olive oil are the same fat so that’s good. Avocado is its own fat as are seeds (i count seeds as 1 category even if I use more than 1 kind of seed). I also love to top it with soaked sun dried tomatoes and some capers (not raw but oh so yummy!)
6. Dinner I try to be done eating by 6 or 7 at the latest so I can wake up energized and refreshed. No snacking at night if I can help it, because that just adds extra work for my body overnight.
7. I do find that I am much hungrier than before and am happy I get to eat more without gaining weight. In fact I’ve lost about 7 or 8 pounds and have really trimmed down. Nice bonus. One thing I have been enjoying is Clif Builder Bars. They are definitely not raw, but are organic and I feel good when I eat them. I also like Lydia’s raw buckwheat-cacao bars for fuel and protein.
I now know that running will always be a part of my life and I am going to continue to sign up for marathons and 1/2 marathons. The next one is the Big Sur Marathon in April and Avenue of the Giants 1/2 marathon sometime next spring. Before I know it a year will have gone by and I’ll have logged hundreds of miles!!!!
I have run farther than I ever thought I could and now think running 12 miles is an easy cake walk. Incredible!
I’m running in Mt. Shasta this week where it is colder and higher altitudes so we’ll see how that goes.
I’ll be back after the marathon to let you know how fabulously it went!