I now have about 50 weeks to prepare for my next marathon, then 2010 Walt Disney World Marathon. Technically, I'm also doing the half marathon that weekend - thus I'm doing the Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge.
So there's no rush and I have time to reset my nutrition. One thing I didn't have much time for last year was experimenting with moderate glycogen depletion. That is, by depleting glycogen during a long run and then drinking lots of recovery drink in the 4 hours after the long run, a person's body learns to store more glycogen. The net result is better long run endurance, since muscle and liver glycogen is an important energy source. We only really need about 3000 calories to run a marathon, so any little improvement helps.
But what's also important is to take in protein while working out, mainly since this will help prevent muscles from eating themselves as an energy source. Net, it helps you reduce soreness.
That's where my experiment with BCAA's (Branched Chain Amino Acids) come in. I read that BCAA's comprise half of muscle tissue (or something like that). They are also readily absorbed. Thus, my glycogen depletion experiment will be combined with taking a few grams of BCAA's during a workout.
Example: Run 15 miles without taking in any carbs, but instead take BCAA's before and during the run. After the run, drink about 800 calories of Accelerade or Endurox. Of course, I'll be sure to take in more than enough electrolytes.
And due to some sloped exit/on ramps for the marathon/half, I'll end my long runs with some "odd slant" portions.
Short recap. Did the 2009 Walt Disney World Marathon this past weekend. My ideal running temperature is 50-60F, but the forecast was a low of 55F and a high of 80F. Thus, knowing it would be too hot, I went out fast and did the first half in 2:29 - which is 15 minutes faster than my target. But then it got hot and I began to walk. Ended up doing a 3:07 second half for a total of 5:34, just 6 minutes off my personal record.
I'll try again next year, but will be signing up for both the 2010 Walt Disney World Marathon and the 2010 Walt Disney World Half Marathon. Yep, that's a half and full marathon during the same weekend. Disney calls this the Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge, I'll medals for both races and a Goofy medal. BTW, that's a Mickey medal for the full and a Donald medal for the half, plus the Goofy medal. So I guess my goal next year is to be Michael Phelps in a way, with all those medals.
Why? Well, I want to do the full marathon, but my wife wants to do the half. So I'll do both. Plus, it's only fitting since I'll be 40 years old running 40 miles that week (13.1 + 26.2 + at least 2 miles walking to/from starting line).