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Ultra running fueling and diabetes

Joined: 05 Jul 2008
Posts: 3
New Jersey, United States
Posted: Sat 10 Jan 2009 03:06 pm GMT   topTop
While I am not new to running, I am new to ultra distances, hence my question.

It has always been my understanding that, when you run more than, say, 90 minutes to 2 hours, you need to begin fueling with things such as gels and sports drinks.

I have recently been diagnosed with diabetes type II and wonder how its treatment, via restricting carbohydrates, squares with my need to fuel with carbs? Can the two
co-exist, or must I forego long distances where these fuels are essential?

Any help is most appreciated.
Joined: 28 Nov 2006
Posts: 35
Arkansas, United States
Posted: Sat 10 Jan 2009 04:36 pm GMT   topTop
I hope you get a response from a diabetic ultra runner, (better yet, one who is a physician,) who can speak from experience and genuine medical knowledge. The only thing I have to offer is that fuel intake in ultra-distance races needs to start well before the two-hour mark. A little nibbling right along, periodically, from the start, is what seems to work best for the majority.
That is, you don't ordinarily want to wait two hours before taking fuel and you don't ever want to eat a lot at once. How that advice fits the special needs of a diabetic, I have no idea.
Good luck to you.
Joined: 01 Sep 2006
Posts: 24
Maryland, United States
Posted: Sat 10 Jan 2009 10:23 pm GMT   topTop
I agree with ajj--I hope you get a response from a diabetic ultrarunner or a physician.

My two cents is this: I think you'll find that a lot of ultrarunners tend to prefer "real" food as a race goes on as opposed to sugary gels and sports drinks. Things such as potatoes, grilled cheese, quesadillas, pierogies, etc. These are still high in carbs, but at least they're not full of simple sugars. What's more, there are any number of low-carb electrolyte drinks out now--Nuun is one, Camelback makes one too.

Best of luck in your racing endeavors!