First half looming

I am attempting my first half marathon in five weeks time. My longest run so far is eleven miles and was purely water powered on the way around. Was absolutely knackered at the end.

What should I refuel with and when should I do it?

All recommendations gratefully accepted cos I've got enough time to try them out.

Thanks in advance.


  • drewdrew ✭✭✭

    Three things you could do.

    1. Take nothing and you still may be ok as your glycogen levels should be quite high on the day due to your taper.

    2. Take a pouch of energy drink with you and drink it between miles 7 & 8.

    3. Take a gel with you and take it, again between miles 7 & 8
  • I'll be sticking with water unless there's coffee at the drinks stations. It should be possible to get through 13 miles on the glycogen stored in a pair of well-trained legs. But if you like isotonic drinks, taking in some of these early in the race might not be a bad idea. Just make sure in advance that you can keep it down.
  • HillyHilly ✭✭✭
    I'm like V-rap and make do with water in distances up to 1/2m. I will most probably have an isotonic drink before the race though.
  • DB

    For a half marathon I would generally only drink water on the way round (if anything!). However, I tend to do the following:

    1. Night before: High Carb meal with lots of pasta.
    2. Morning of race: About 500ml of Isostar (generally with breakfast).
    3. 250 - 500 ml water in the hour before the start.
  • I generally start with a energy drink (High5) and once that is gone, usually in about 7 miles, I ditch the bottle and run the rest perhaps with a few mouthfuls of water to keep comfortable. As Drew said, 1/2m can really be done on stored energy, so isn't too bad.
  • My pre-race preparation is like MartinH - then on the day, i have the 500ml of PSP sports drink before the race, take a small running bottle of PSP with me. I take sips of PSP every mile or so, miss the first water station, then start to pick up water at the following water stations. With the water i do the following: two gulps of water then the rest over my head, throw away the cup/bottle then burp for the next hundred yards or so.
    At the finish i down about a pint of water then slosh around the finish area for a 400m cool down jog.
  • DB,

    Why not try an energy gel 40 minutes into your next longish training run? It may or may not help, but if you're already wondering about refueling then it's worth a try. If they suit you it's good news, as they're much easier to carry than water bottles. (I quite like the ones that don't require me to drink exra water.) I used one of these on my recent 10 miler, and will certainly use them in anything longer than that. Good luck :)
  • It was my first at Windsor. I carried water aroound with me and I was very glad I did in view of it running out. You could try gels but you have to find one that suits you - I've heard that they can make you feel really sick if you're not used to taking on energy while running.

    Good luck. I moaned and moaned (on these Forums, sorry chaps!) about Windsor and my training but I had a brilliant day - couldn't stop smiling during the last mile. I found it really helpful mentally that I had run 13.1 miles twice before the race - I knew I could run the distance so I was able to worry about other things...

    Hope you have a good one!
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