Racing on Fats: Traverse City Trail Festival 50K

Cam wrote a previous article about the changes in sports nutrition. His main focus was on the lower carb, high fat diet and how it could be utilized for optimal performance when it comes to endurance athletes. Today Cam shares a personal account of a recent 50km race he ran in Traverse City. You can read Cams precious article here.

This was my second crack at an ultra marathon and I feel like I’ve really dialed in my nutrition for the longer distance races. I have been training with a high fat, low carb diet off and on for the past couple years and I feel like it’s finally coming together. I have cut down my previous race nutrition consumption from about 350 – 400 cal per hour to under 200 cal per hour with under 35g of carbs. The race was a success and my body recovered faster than I thought it would which I would attribute to taking in less inflammatory carbs during the race.

Here’s a run-down of exactly what I consumed during the race. Now this is not a guideline for someone to follow but rather just putting it out there for everyone to see. You don’t necessarily have to consume energy gels every 30 mins during a long sustained effort but you can develop your fat burning system to help you fuel long sustained, lower intensity racing.

½ serving of chia seed pudding
Coffee with a serving of MCT oil and tbs of coconut oil

Pre-race (Starting 1 hour before race):
Water bottle of Beta Red (2 Scoops) – 80 Cal, 14g Carbs

Race: (In order)
0:00 – 1:00
500ml of Amino Acid with water (2 scoops) – 130 Cals, 10g carbs
2 homemade Date Balls at start/finish – 120 Cal, 22g carbs

1:00 – 2:05
250ml of Amino acid water (1 scoop) – 65 Cals, 5g carb
200ml of Hammer Perpetuum – 80 Cal, 16g carb
1 Square of Enduro Bite at start/finish – 100 Cal/square, 20g carb

2:05 – 3:15
300ml of Hammer Perpetuum – 120 Cal, 24g carb
100ml of Beta Red – 20 Cal, 3g carb
1 Square of Enduro Bite – 100 Cal, 20g carb

3:15 – 4:25
100ml of Beta Red – 20 Cal, 4g carb
300ml of Hammer Perpetuum – 120 Cal, 24g carb
Hammer Gel – 90 Cal, 22g carb

4:25 to 5:30
100ml of Hammer Perpetuum – 40 Cal, 8g carb
300ml of Beta Red – 40 Cal, 4g carTotal Fluid intake: 2150ml (390ml per hour)

Calories over race: 1045 Cal (190 Cal per hour)
Carb intake: 182g (33g per hour) + 14g in pre-race bottle

Race Notes:

Minor cramping in diaphragm, off and on from lap 3 on. Minimal calf cramping (minor twinges only), minimal hamstring cramping, only occurred on last lap. No noticeable decrease in energy levels or bonking effects during race. No bathroom stops at all, minor gas throughout race. This was a huge improvement from last ultra marathon where I cramped severally, had several bathroom breaks and eventually couldn’t eat anything other than water because my GI system revolted.


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