Listened to lots of podcasts these past few weeks. One got me thinking about multi-stage ultramarathon events. Am I too old to try something that grueling? Excited to see a new water fountain on the Mount Vernon Trail! Got my first Runner’s World Box.
Clothing & Gear
Shorts. Saucony Impulse Short ($48). I ordered another pair of what is currently my favorite running short. At this point, I think I own four pairs and am cycling out my previous favorite short – the Nike 3″ Tempo Short. I’ve noticed the fit has changed slightly – some pairs are slightly roomier through the hips than others and the back pocket on some is slightly smaller.
Scales. Garmin Smart Index Scale ($149.99). I got in the habit of weighing myself after longer runs during the summer to see how much water I might need to take in during the day. Unfortunately, this scale won’t log a second weight for the day without deleting the first . It’s very frustrating. In my case, I don’t even want to save the second weight. So, it would be great if there was to make the scale ignore the weigh in. It’s hard to understand why this feature wasn’t built in.
Nutrition & Hydration
Gels. Power Bar Simple Fruit. This is the first of two gels I received from Strideboxes that I tried recently. I took this gel on a medium run last week. It tasted like applesauce and pure sugar. The main ingredients are Apple Juice Concentrate and Apple Puree Concentrate. It was so sweet that I didn’t finish it. It’s 100 calories.
Chocolate #9. I ate this gel during yesterday’s 13 miler. It’s made from agave and it was super sweet! It’s branded as a slow release, low glycemic index gel. It’s only 70 calories, 15g of carbohydrate and less than 1g of protein and fat. I suspect this type of gel might be better for triathletes than runners, but haven’t had a chance to research to topic, yet.
Post-workout Nutrition. Health Warrior Bar. This bar was from one of my Strideboxes, too. I tried it for breakfast after a tempo run. It’s made from pumpkin seeds and was cinnamon spice flavor. It’s 280 calories, 12g of carbohydrate, 8g of protein, and 12g of fat.
Runner’s World Box. I cancelled my Stridebox subscription and signed up for the Runner’s World Box so I could try something new. My first box arrived! First impressions: it’s bigger than Stridebox, which gave me hope that it might have more gear.
Inside, there were two gear items – socks and a therapy ball. I thought the food items were a little random. Chips and tuna aren’t usually considered performance foods, but I suppose they are healthy. The health bar was coconut flavor, which I don’t like, but I’ll give it a go. I was excited about the tart cherry juice, though, since I’ve never tried that. I was happy that the FlipBelt coupon lets me pick the one I want.
Safety. The safety improvements on the Mount Vernon Trail (“MVT”) near Roosevelt Island appear complete. Coming down the Trail from Rosslyn, the path is a little wider and next to the river and very nicely paved. Crossing the parking lot, there are better markings on the road to indicate lanes for runners and bicyclists.
Water Fountains. There’s a new water fountain on the Mount Vernon Trail near Roosevelt Island! I tried it yesterday and thought the water had a little too much chlorine in it, but hopefully, that’ll change. It was a very welcomed sight heading into the summer!
Media & Motivation
(My “Songs of the Week” playlist on Spotify.)
Podcasts. “The Dawn of Biohacking: Using Biomarkers to Optimize Your Unique Wiring for Peak Performance and Health – Chris Kelly,” RunnersConnect Run to the Top. The bio-marker part wasn’t as interesting to me, but the part towards the end about getting your body to a state where it burns more fat was. I’m not someone who downs a lot of gels during races – I think my record is still four. But, generally, my diet is heavy on carbohyrdrates and I wonder if I should look at eating more protein and fat.
“Episode 386 – Elisabet Barnes,” by Marathon Talk. I listened to this during Monday’s medium run and the discussion of the Marathon Des Sables (or MdS, as they call it on the show) kept me captivated. I knew nothing about multi-stage endurance events and learned a lot from this interview. Over the years, I’ve been asked whether I’d ever run an ultramarathon. For some reason, this type of event is more interesting to me than a straight 50 miler. I had a similar reaction to the Barkley Marathons. Which is funny because I don’t camp. (Although, maybe it’s kinda like Ragnar.)
“It’s Never Too Late to be What You Might Have Been – Cherie Gruenfeld,” from RunnersConnect. During a run, I thought, “You are too old to take up multi-day ultramarathons. I immediately thought of this cast. She told a charming story about how she started running in her early 40s after watching the Los Angeles Marathon on television. Now, she does triathlons.
“Episode 56: Boston Bound?,” from Runner’s World Show. I followed his “moon shot”, which paralleled Nike’s Breaking2 project. I was happy that they devoted a show to his race. Even though I knew the outcome, it was a suspenseful episode. I hope he gets in.
Motivation. “The starting point of all achievement is desire.” – Napoleon Hill
My motivation is pretty low right now. I’m not super excited to start training for the New York City Marathon. Don’t get me wrong – I’m looking forward to running it. Just not training for it.