Sand Hollow Marathon, a 26.2 mile looping journey beginning and ending in Hurricane, Utah is to be held this Saturday, March 29, 2014. In preparation, I have been double-checking weather reports, staring at the course map and elevation profile. Another part of the pre-race prep is making sure a fueling strategy is in place ahead of time.
Being that I won a box of Gu from the Village Runner, during one of our Wednesday evening group runs, that was unopened, I figured I would give it a try, to see how my body reacts to it. The instructions say to have a “few ounces” of water with each pack of their gel food. Have you ever eaten a big spoonful of frosting? That’s what Gu is like. It took an entire bottle of water to clear the substance from my mouth. Another bonus, was the near induction of vomiting, due to the consistency of the Gu pack.
For 100 calories, I think I will pass! I couldn’t see trying to eat one of those while running, nor adding another 16 ounces of water to my system, ever 45 minutes, as directed.
One side-effect some runners have reported, when consuming Gu, is a rather intense gastro-intestinal distress situation. Around 4 hours after having my one pack of Gu, my guts cramped like nobody’s business. Another thing I would like to avoid while running 26.2 miles.
Otherwise, my plan will be much the same as it always is. Make it through the first six miles or so, then start consuming Gatorade chews every other mile. May pick up another pack of them, so I can make sure to have one per mile. In the past, they usually give me enough extra energy to get a mile or so down the course. If I can keep the fuel level a little higher, perhaps I won’t have that dragging sensation toward the end.
The race’s scenery should be very majestic, from past event photos. Running around a lake at the center of Sand Hollow State Park, with the picturesque red rock formations around mile 9.5 through 13 will be a nice way to end the first half.
Here’s to a good race!