Fueling on back-to-backs

I normally avoid taking on fuel during a long training run to get my body a bit more used to using fat for energy.

However, I'll soon be training with long back-to-back runs, so not sure if this is good for repair and energy for the second run.

What are the experts' opinions on this


  • If you never fuel on long runs then you're not training to refuel during your race! This -is- something you need to practice, as you need to find out what works for you. You'll almost certainly want to eat 'real' food during the race, and savory not just sweet, so you need experience of what foods your digestive system can cope with.
  • Debra

    But isn't 'training to refuel during the race' all about finding out what works for you and your stomach, so there are no surprises on the day? I intend to refuel on the day and probably a few training runs leading up to the race.

    I've done 8 marathons and an ultra, so I already know pretty much what works for me in that respect, but wondering if doing the majority of training without fuel to train the body to better use fat. But also wondering if this would negatively affect recovery for my second of the back-to-backs?
  • SSLHP: when you wrote ""I normally avoid taking on fuel during a long training run" it sounded like you were doing all your long runs without fueling - hence my reminder that you need to do some taking on fuel to practice that as well. Yes, if you're doing back-to-backs you want to refuel after the first one (during? not sure I think I've done a fasted long run, refueled afterwards and then run to work and back the next day - slowly).

    Other than that: experiment! We're all different and it's not like you'll only be doing one back-to-back, so try different strategies and see what works for you - but do take appropriate food with you so you have it if you suddenly find you're running on empty (being 10 miles from anywhere with nothing available to eat and your body not wanting to go further is not a good scenario).
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