Thursday, February 26, 2009

Get-Go Gel

Here we are again, another Thursday! You know what that means! It's Runners' Lounge Take It and Run Thursday with this week's theme being "a chance to pose both the question and the answer. " Share the one burning question you have about your running and ask other TIaRT readers/contributors for their feedback. I have this question:

Is it O.K. to take a Gel right at the Get-Go?

When my runs are longer then 90 minutes, then it's time for me to include a gel in my routine at about the one hour mark. Last Sunday was my first run at that time in my marathon training program. During that run, and other longer runs in the past when I have taken a gel, I notice shortly thereafter I feel exuberant, which is what is suppose to happen! I have never taken one at the start of my run but I am wondering now, why not take one just before I start running and feel exuberant right from the Get-Go!


  1. I take one Gu before I head out for a run longer than 5 or 6 miles. I don't know if it actually does help, but mentally I feel like I should have that magic Gu energy for the first 45 mins to hour, until I take the next one. Anything that can trick my mind into thinking that I'm strong and full of energy is worth it!

  2. Alexandra,
    I opt to drink sports drink or Coke before the start, so I can store more glycogen and be hydrated. But gu is fine at the start...I've seen elites do it.
    That said, it should NOT keep you from taking gu and drinks on the course at the normal rate. The body stores around 1400 calories before it burns mostly fat. So at 100 calories/mile it'll help to put some easily digested energy back in the bank.
    But not too much: better to burn a your body's carb/fat mix than to get sick on the course from overloading:)...

  3. I typically don't take one before I start, but I've seen plenty of runners do it. Make sure to always take them with water!

  4. ohhh that was a good question, i'm loving the answers too!

  5. When I am doing a long run when training for a marathon I take to SIS Gels, Not necessary to take water but I do! I take one before I start then one every half hour to 40 mins. When you get to the longer distances you really notice the energy fix..I find it only lasts for about 15 mins but it is enough to give you something to aim for over the remaining 10 mins! You are right to start using them now though as they don't agree with everyone and it's good to train with what you plan to use on the big day!. Go Girl! x

  6. I've run several marathons and have never taken gels (well once but I got sick...), I stick with Gatorade which keeps my hydrated and provides enough calories as well. I might dry some of the newer gels one of these days, though.


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