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Help! First Long Run on the Whole 30

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I'm on day 5 of my whole 30 challenge so understandably my body is likely not fat dependent in its energy needs. I need suggestions for fueling before and during my long run tomorrow, I have to go 13 miles! I usually do Gu, but those are obviously out of the question.

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Hey there! I ate dried dates for my long runs during my last Whole 30. I have been known (on more than one occasion) to make fudge bombs with them (which isn't really in the spirit of the Whole30). Blend dates, vanilla essence, cacao, and almonds in a food processor till it makes a paste, then roll them into balls. They pack well in a fuel belt. I'm making some right now for my labour bag! Good luck!

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Let me know what you discover works-I will be ramping up my long runs again for a fall half marathon soon. Didn't have much luck with fueling during my first whole30, and was training for a half marathon that happened on day 30. It wasn't pretty, so I'm really hoping to figure it out this go-round! I think it's healthy fats-I'm pretty confident that I am eating plenty of healthy carbs every day.

Good luck! What are you training for?

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Colleen- I am training for the Chicago marathon in October... I will keep you updated with any other ideas I find! I remember reading your "Epic Fail" post & I have a very similar story.

As for this training run---- it was absolutely terrible! I didn't have time to eat anything prior, as the run started at 6:30 & I was only up an hour and a half before the run began. I had some baby food (a suggestion I had read on another site for Paleo fuel during runs) before the run, but not much.

I was fine until mile 5, & it was not hot at all so I was not extra drained. I just took water at our water stop & had half a serving of baby food (again, a suggestion for a Paleo-friendly Gu alternative). Immediately when we began running after mile 5 I felt myself fading I didn't feel fatigued in the normal way one who was tired from running would feel. I didn't feel present, I felt like I was in a dream-like state or an out of body experience. At mile 6 I had brain fog & I felt as if I could fall asleep while running.

I decided at our next water stop I wasn't going to finish this run without the help of Gatorade & Gu. At mile 7 I took Gatorade, as much as I wanted, & some water. I instantly felt better. At mile 9 I took a Gu & some water & felt even better. By mile 11 I was taking a water & Gatorade mix. I finished the run strong.

Interestingly enough, I have had no soreness after this run. This is after eating Paleo for 5 days on this challenge. I think that speaks to the diet itself & I will be continuing to eat Paleo, BUT on days I am training/running for long distances, I will be taking GU & drinking Gatorade.

I cannot afford to compromise my training at this point. I also believe thatI am using the carbs, electrolytes, calories I am consuming while performing these physically demanding tasks. I am not simply eating them for pleasure & I think that is still within the spirit of Paleo.

Let me know what you all think of this strategy or if you have had success or a similar story with fueling for large races!

Happy Running!

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I ran a half marathon in July after eating pretty strictly Whole30 for the 28/29ish days prior. I stayed away from Gatorade or any type of electrolyte drink during training, I was following Crossfit Endurance training mostly (except that I couldn't really do any lifting because of an injury..so I was really just doing the CFE running workouts 3x a week and some squats and lunges and other random things that do not use upper body at all).

I bought these saltstick electrolyte capsules and planned to use them during the race - http://www.crossfitendurance.com/products/3_fuel__supplements/salt_stick_caps_-_30_ct BUT completely forgot to pack them. (I actually don't know if these would even be Whole30 approved, but they seemed a lot better than anything else out there.) Here's the ingredient list for SaltStick:

Supplement Facts

Serving Size: 1 Capsule Each Capsule Contains %DV Sodium

(as 550 mg sodium chloride) 215mg 9% Potassium

(as potassium citrate and potassium chloride) 63mg 2% Calcium

(as calcium citrate and calcium gluconate) 22mg 2% Magnesium

(as magnesium citrate and magnesium gluconate) 11mg 3% Vitamin D3 100 IU 25% Other Ingredients: Vegetable cellulose (capsules), magnesium stearate, stearic acid (flowing agents)

I knew there would be some type of gel thing at every other water stop but definitely not ones I was comfortable with. I found a running store pretty close to our hotel and got NUUN tablets. Here's the ingredient list, and no, they're not Whole30 compliant:

Active Ingredients

Sodium (carbonates)

Potassium (bicarbonate)

Magnesium (sulfate)

Calcium (carbonate)

Vitamin C

Vitamin B2 level (mg)

360.0

100.0

25.0

12.5

37.5

500 mcg Other ingredients: citric acid, sorbitol, sodium carbonate, natural colors flavors, sodium bicarbonate, potassium bicarbonate, polyethylene glycol, magnesium sulfate, sodium benzoate, calcium carbonate, acesulfame potassium, riboflavin-5-phosphate.

http://www.nuun.com/company/faqs

I felt like they were not AS bad as other products on the completely non-paleo to paleo scale, and I knew I needed something...soo I just went with it, and really loved it. I know they're not paleo (citric acid and sorbitol I think?) but they just seemed much more paleo-friendly than any of my other options. (I'm convinced I wouldn't have finished without these tablets.) You just drop half of one into water, and let it fizz....I don't like carbonated stuff, so I walked for a minute or two around water stops until the fizzing went away (so I think that was my only drawback).

Look forward to reading your training updates :)

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I do have the Nuun tablets that I have used in the past! I also use them post running... I know we're all for eating healthy & clean here, but something has to give. I'm not convinced quite yet on the Paleo for Athletes... seems like a lot of people have a problem translating it to endurance sports... we shall see. I am not being super strict. In fact, I went completely off the wagon these past two days & I am right back on again... Although I completely understand the idea of going cold turkey sometimes it is too much of a shock. I am planning on being as strict as I can for the next 30 days, but I am not going to completely freak out & start over again. I guess it's the effort & the small changes that will make the biggest impact for me personally.

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I agree with you. I was strict my first week and completely blew my long run - half marathon distance. So I suspended the program for the rest of the day and celebrated my anniversary basically cheating. I was completely ready to give up the whole program yesterday because of the effect on my athletic performance but I've decided to pick up where I left off instead. Lots of benefits so far. I'm just struggling with energy and getting my runs done. Getting enough calories without eating sweet potatoes all day is challenging. Anyway, I like your balanced attitude. I'm not starting over and I'm not giving up. But I may have to make modifications and miss out on the full, hardcore experience at some points. Unfortunately, I didn't think about how marathon training could be at odds with this program and the marathon (Chicago for me also!) is my first goal and priority. Maybe after it, I'll try to do the strictest Whole30 since I"ll be reducing calories when running less. For now, I don't know what else to do but add some whole grains on running days.

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Have you read "the art and science of low carbohydrate performance" by Phinney and Volek? It's a great read and it may help you figure out how long it will take you to adapt to a lower carb diet. They have 2 similar sounding titles, one is "TA&SOLC living"and the one I mentioned above "TA&SOLC performance". "Performance" is geared towards athletes and "living" is geared towards your average person on the SAD. I found them both to be great reads and informative.

The authors are not paleo but the principles are easily applied to a paleo diet. It might help in your training.

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For now, I don't know what else to do but add some whole grains on running days.

Ladies, please give the whole 30 the fullest experience you can. Whole grains do nothing for you. I repeat NOTHING. If you need calories, eat fruit, almond butter, coconut milk, coconut butter. There is simply no reason to resort back to grains for calorie content.

I'm sorry for the tough love here on this, but resorting back to grains is not your only option here.

Nothing worth doing was every easy. Eating grains is easy. Sticking to a whole 30 might be one of the hardest changes you ever make. But I can promise you, it is so worth it!

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Hi Everyone! I would like to recommend the Paleo diet for athletes, and here are the cliff notes...http://www.trainingbible.com/pdf/Paleo_for_Athletes_Cliff_Notes.pdf. I am training for a triathlon and following this. He has homemade recovery drinks that are whole30 compliant in the book, except for the glucose. I personally use coconut water, otherwise I hit the wall on my morning runs. I am planning to make a bunch of yams a few times a week and have them ready for right after my training sessions.

I have to agree with what Megan says, ditch the whole grains! They will cause you more harm than good. Good luck!

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I'm going to jump on the tough love train along with Megan. If your purpose was to clean up your eating habits and experiment with removing a food group or two, well then I guess you're there. If your purpose was to do a Whole30, then to give it less than a 100% effort is pointless. Your body needs the full process to accomplish what the program sets out to accomplish. The first 1-2 weeks are going to be tough, as you're changing your body's primary source of energy. That's expected and normal. However, if that's a serious issue for you perhaps, as a previous poster mentioned, it would be better to wait until you feel you can give the program the effort it requires. Honestly, you'll get out of this what you put into it.

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I guess what we are saying is we can't afford for our first one to two weeks to be hard because we are in the full swing of our training. We are letting training for this race take prescendence over being 100% strictly Paleo.

In short, we will revisit and do the complete 30 day challenge in its strictest form when we aren't training for a race. Our subsequent races will be using the Paleo approach, but for me it is almost picking and choosing battles here. Just as we shouldn't undertake new harsh workout programs like P90x I should have considered this a poor time to take on this challenge. I actually have no plans to eat whole grains even on days I run. My plan is to use Gu and Gatorade because that is what my running self and body have been used to until now. I will ease into Paleo for my next trainings. No whole grains or carbo loading for me!

Personally I have already noticed changes in my body after one week: clearer skin, monthly cycle changes, energy level etc. no way am I going back to dairy or whole grains!

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I have been running - and racing in the mountains -- all through this Whole30, and have noticed that the first couple weeks were a little tough, but it got progressively better. I did a 14-mile trail run up a mountain this Sunday, and here's what I ate:

Pre-run: sweet potato/onion hash with poached egg and avocado.

During run: water

After run: 2 apples

I felt fantastic through the whole run - best I've felt running in a long time. And not even tired the rest of the day. AT ALL. We had an early supper of roast chicken/veggies/salad. I probably snacked on some fruit and dried dates during the afternoon after the run.

My suggestion is to up the fruits a bit, particularly bananas, if you are feeling depleted. You really shouldn't need a "feed" in a run that's less than 2 hours in length. Water should be sufficient, and you should be careful not to overdrink, but just drink to thirst.

My husband is also doing the WHole30 with me - we started July 9th - and he's feeling really exhausted in the evenings. But his runs are going fine. While I did 14 miles, he did 21 miles - he had more breakfast than me, and ate 2 bananas and an apple upon finishing. I have a feeling he needs more food than he's getting and that's why he's so tired at night. He has a tendency not to eat lunch and I think he's just calorie-depleted, so I'm trying to pack eggs and veggies with him to work.

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Thanks for all the postings and recommendations on this thread. I decided after posting to not reintroduce grains but instead up my intake of fruit. I was restricting fruit out of fear of overdoing it and getting binge-y with it. I feel so good following Whole30 that I haven't wanted to give up and start eating things I cut out (and when I did a little bit on Sunday I felt crappy). I still wouldn't have made the same decision to start this had I known how it would affect marathon training (for me, I'm sure everyone is different). But I'm still fighting over here! I love tough love! Hopefully I won't quit every Sunday after my long runs :)

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Rshows -

Restricting carbs, especially fruit, is a really common mistake and can completely sidetrack folks with an athletic bent. Don't be afraid to give your body easy access energy, especially when you're asking it do run 13 miles. Plus, it's summer - enjoy the bounty!

Glad to have you (back) on the wagon with us!

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I am a newb to the forums and am on Day 2, but wanted to say thanks for this thread. This was one of my fears about doing the program as I am finally getting back to running some decent distance after thyroid mishaps for a couple years. I am eating dates and cashews before and refueling with eggs, ham and a sweet potato, and it seems to be working okay for now (I've been toying with paleo before actually going full on WH30 this week!).

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I am training for the Marine Corps Marathon (October) and I was on day 5 when I did a 12-mile run. Incidentally, day 4 was a 6-mile pace run as well.

I went through the brain fog and sugar cravings as I hit mile 10.5. My per mile minute pace was a minute slower. I managed to finish ok. The more and more I thought about it, the more I realized that if I require gel to run long distances, I am probably not fueling properly during the times that I am not running.

This October will be my second marathon and last year at this time I was doing the Powergel and Gatorade thing too. I feel much better running without that stuff now. For the marathon I had to carry 8 gels which was no fun.

Give it some time. It will likely take more than a week.

Anyways, check this out: raisins are just as effective as powergels for pre-exercise fueling:

http://www.ncbi.nlm....pubmed/18076252

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My husband is also doing the WHole30 with me - we started July 9th - and he's feeling really exhausted in the evenings. But his runs are going fine. While I did 14 miles, he did 21 miles - he had more breakfast than me, and ate 2 bananas and an apple upon finishing. I have a feeling he needs more food than he's getting and that's why he's so tired at night. He has a tendency not to eat lunch and I think he's just calorie-depleted, so I'm trying to pack eggs and veggies with him to work.

WHY are some men so stubborn? My husband is the same way! I keep telling him that he isn't eating enough...grrrrrrr. He's self-employed roofer-works 8-12 hour days in the summer-up and down ladders, lugging shingles...that alone requires more food! And then he runs....no wonder he's so tired. He won't listen to me though. I do the same as you and try to pack him something that I know he'll eat-some days he will, some days he won't. He's been a little better during this second go-round. Hopefully, he'll continue this trend!

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Mine is the same way, only he has a desk job so there's no excuse! I try to pack him bulk food like a dozen eggs, a big container of chilli, a couple pounds of carrots. It seems that the only way I can scare him into eating is to remind him that he won't lose that chub he hates if he doesn't eat.

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This is a hot topic indeed. I'm an endurance athlete and running coach. Switching to Whole 30 did affect my endurance slightly; I felt a little weak and a little more burning in my legs than usual for the first 3 or 4 runs during the Whole 30. However, improvements in recovery have made up for this. I am able to train harder than I was just 3 weeks ago. You've got to give it time and not freak out because you feel differently. You won't pass out on your run. If you do, you really need the Whole 30! Do some speed work instead of a long run and refuel with protein and a sweet potatoe with ghee or coconut oil. You'll be ready for a long run before you know it.

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I signed up for a half marathon in October and want to do the Goofy Race and Half challenge in January and have been slacking on my runs as it is, I have been a little worried about training on the Whole30. I am starting CrossFit this week and plan on training in the CrossFit endurance style. I am really 'frexcited" about the whole thing :)

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just so you know, I had issues with my running and cycling when I first went Paleo. I did a whole21 (added dairy early) and have been pretty strictly paleo (with raw dairy) with maybe four times eating grains since May/June? Two of those were to fuel a run, but I've now figured out it's not necessary.

My running and cycling got better as my body got used to Paleo. I went backpacking three times this summer on a paleo diet, and the one day I ate some processed crap on the trail (added food coloring and potato starch, sugar), I got a bit ill. Otherwise, my hiking, running, and biking have been very strong.

For reference, I regularly run anywhere from 5-15 miles, and my rides are usually 20-40 miles with elevation. Most of the time I don't need to eat at all during runs or rides, unless I ate light the day before.

So there you have it. It just takes some time to adjust.

Good luck!

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This post was JUST what I needed! I thought I was going crazy aving all these same feelings. I do CrossFit and run 3-4 times a week and on day 8, was finding out how weak and "dream like" I was feeling. I was to the point of losing my lunch and falling over! Now I know why and now I know what to do to fix it! Thankfully Tough Mudder is still over 2 weeks away so I can get this proper pre-fueling down! :D

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