I’m having a fuel issue. Two workouts a day mean that my calorie requirements are enormous and I’ve done a poor job of meeting them, resulting in lethargic workouts and exhaustion. I’m bonking in workouts and there are ketones in my urine, a sign that I’m burning muscle for fuel because my body is literally starving. (I struggle with this enough that I regularly check my blood sugar and pee on ketone strips after long workouts.)
Part of the problem is the sheer bulk of food I need to consume to power my workouts. I’m burning upwards of 2000 calories a day with workouts, plus the regular calories I need to exist. I don’t particularly care about food (as in, I’d take intravenous nutrition if it were practical), which means that I’m likely to skip a snack or meal. The other problem is that under stress, I have no appetite. Before my long run on Sunday, getting down one packet of oatmeal was a challenge. Not surprisingly, I was hungry by mile 6 and bonking by 9.
Thankfully, with a mom who’s an RD, I have a backup plan. When food makes me gaggy, I can often tolerate liquids, which means that until my stress level comes down or my appetite comes back, I’m drinking a lot of juice, Ensure, chocolate milk and protein shakes. I’m back to carefully menu planning, so that I can’t wiggle out of dinner by eating a string cheese.
You need to fuel well to run well and over the next few weeks, I need to be more vigilant about fueling the workouts I’m asking my legs to carry me through.