Re: Half marathon, low carb, ignorant questions

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by Tony, Sep 16, 2004.

  1. Tony

    Tony Guest

    Ignoramus19552 wrote in message ...
    >Please forgive me if my questions are extremely ignorant or too
    >frequently asked. I read this newsgroup only occasionally.
    >
    >I have been running for more years than I would care to admit, always
    >recreationally (it is a sort of addiction, I feel bad if I do not run
    >for extended periods), although I did one 5k race last year (25
    >minutes 13 sec).
    >
    >Lost 50 lbs in 2003, but I switched to a low carb diet 2 months ago
    >(called paleo diet, meat, vegetables, fish, nuts, eggs etc, but no
    >starches).
    >
    >I used to run 30 minutes runs, and usually I was tired by the end of
    >the run. Recently, after the diet change, I noticed that I am not
    >really tired by the end of the run, and usually need to terminate my
    >running due to boredom or lack of time (kid stuff).
    >
    >My feeling, which I am planning on verifying, is that my endurance is
    >now better (and my knees also). Given that, I am entertaining the idea
    >of running a half marathon, which should be about 2+ hours of running
    >lightly, which is not a terrible leap from where I am.
    >
    >My question is, I am not wanting to win that half marathon, just run
    >through it. Would it be sufficient to try to run for, say, 1-1.5 hours
    >and see if I am too tired by the end? Is it possible to do on a low
    >carb diet, given that I am in a reasonable average condition? Or, is
    >there a radical difference betwene running for 1 hour vs. two hours?
    >


    You should look at the TKD (targeted ketogenic diet). Intensive exercise
    makes demands on the body, and it makes sense to properly fuel it for
    exercise. A TKD diet can be low-carb or not so low-carb, depending on your
    exercise workload and your preference. Whether or not there is a so-called
    "metabolic advantage" to low-carb diets is debatable. Less debatable is
    that an exercise workload changes the metabolism both during and after
    exercise.

    A TKD diet can be optimized to properly fuel muscles before, during, and
    after exercise. You should do your own research on it, but for me, TKD
    means that I always refuel the muscles within 30 mins after completing
    exercise with simple carbs and some protein. If I'm exercising longer than
    100 mins I will take carbs during exercise. If I'm planning a long run I
    will eat more complex carbs than normal 24-48 hours before exercise - and
    drink lots of fluids. The muscles are insulin-sensitive up to 2 hours after
    exercise, meaning most carbs that you eat will be absorbed into them as
    muscle glycogen. After 2 hours, and up to 16 hours, the muscles can become
    insulin-resistant, meaning carbs you eat will not refuel them. The research
    on this is ongoing, but this holds true to my experience.

    Your fat-burning metabolism will take care of itself. The body will always
    burn fat first as a choice of fuel until the pace increases. Carbs are not
    evil - they are just a special form of fuel that should be understood and
    respected. If you're inactive or consume too many simple carbs as a regular
    part of your diet, then the evidence is becoming clear that it can cause
    pre-diabetic syndrome and eventually type II diabetes.

    Carbs have been shown to help both performance during exercise, and promote
    healthy muscle recovery after exercise. Unless you have other health
    complications or are feeling particularly religious about low-carb dieting
    (which is irrational), then using carbs in your diet in a smart way makes
    sense.

    - Tony
     
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