Eat right before the big race, and after
BY JASON ASHLEY WRIGHT World Scene Writer
Thursday, October 25, 2012
10/25/12 at 2:44 AM
If you've ever finished a marathon - or even if you haven't - the idea of celebrating with a glass of champagne or an ice-cold beer might seem apropos.
But it's not the smartest thing to do, warned Sloan Taylor, a board-certified sports dietitian with the University of Tulsa and St. Francis Hospital.
"Cross the finish line, and indulge in water and fluid-replacement drinks," she said. You can enjoy your alcoholic beverage of choice afterward.
After running, you need to drink fluids that don't promote the loss of more fluid, and alcohol is a diuretic, she reminded.
These are important to keep in mind Saturday when the 35th annual Tulsa Run takes place. Registration for the race closes noon Thursday, and packet pickup is 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday at the Hyatt Regency Downtown, 100 E. Second St., as well as 6-8 a.m. Saturday.
With thousands of locals participating, Taylor wanted to share the following nutritional mistakes runners should avoid.
Eating a high-fat meal the night before the race. Avoid that creamy sauce, cheese, butter and oil before a race, suggested Monique Ryan, author of "Sports Nutrition for Endurance Athletes," in Dimity McDowell's article for the November 2011 issue of Runner's World.
Also avoid too much protein, Ryan said. "Both nutrients fill you up faster than carbs and take longer to digest." Instead, she suggested things like jam on toast, tomato sauce - not alfredo - on pasta, frozen yogurt not ice cream.
Skipping breakfast before the race. "Even the elites will eat something," Taylor said. It doesn't have to be a full, sit-down meal; but eat an English muffin or bagel, or a piece or two of toast.
Liquid items count as well, she said - fruit juice, chocolate milk, a fruit smoothie.
Picking breakfast items that don't digest quickly. "Avoid heavy breakfast meats, like sausage, ham or excessive bacon," Taylor said. Also avoid high-fiber foods, which take longer to digest.
Eating too close to the start time of the race. "In a perfect world, it would benefit to complete your breakfast food no closer than one hour before start time," Taylor warned.
Overeating during the race. Carbohydrate gels, carb chews or other supplemental items may not be required for the Tulsa Run's 15K distance.
Many of the carb-gel manufacturers promote that you should eat one carb gel for each 45 minutes of physical activity, but there could be tolerance issues, Taylor said. Plus, that amount is not necessarily required for the 15K distance.
Consuming something during the race that you have never tried before. "No need to risk a good race just because someone offered you a carb gel, beer or any other item on the race course that you've never trained with," she said.
Fluid overloading. Fluid is important, but no need to overdo it.
Make sure you have consumed 10-20 ounces of fluid before you leave for the start line, but don't drink large quantities, Taylor said.
Consuming food without water or fluid replacement. "It's a cruel trick to eat something without water, so consider waiting for the water stops if you want to snack while running," she said.
For more about the Tulsa Run, visit tulsaworld.com/tulsarun
Race inspires gazelles, and those who aren't
The 35th annual Tulsa Run is Saturday morning with its usual assortment of serious runners and those who are already in the Halloween spirit.
Those who aren't registered to run can still take part in the festivities by cheering on runners at the starting line at Seventh Street and Boulder Avenue.
The 5k run starts at 8:30 a.m., the 15k at 9 a.m. and the 2k at 9:15 a.m.
The race ends at Fifth Street and Boston Avenue, where the Finish Line Festival will feature music from Grady Nichols from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. and My So Called Band from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.
Fassler Hall will provide food and beverages for the festival. And a Kid's Zone will have inflatables and various sponsor booths. Big screen TVs will be set up at the festival, so that no one will miss any of the day's big games.
TYPros - Tulsa's Young Professionals - is hosting the festival, said Alex Alston, executive director of the Tulsa Sports Commission.
The Runner's Expo at the Hyatt, 100 E. Second St., also will be open throughout the day.
What to wear
When it comes to social events, you may have heard the saying "it's better to be overdressed than underdressed."
That's not the case when it comes to running, said Tim Dreiling, who owns Fleet Feet Sports Tulsa with his wife, Lori.
"Nothing's worse than being overdressed," said Dreiling, who recommended dressing for 20 degrees warmer than the actual temperature because your body temperature will rise while running.
With temperatures during Saturday morning's Tulsa Run expected to be in the 30s, some folks - especially Tulsa Run newbies - might be concerned about what to wear.
Layering is important, Dreiling said. You can even wear a big, black trash bag, with a hole cut on the bottom to stick your head through and one on each side for your arms. It's plastic, so it will be a good block against the wind.
Definitely wear hats and gloves, he said. "As long as you keep your head warm and your hands warm, you really don't need to wear a lot of anything else."
After one or two miles, your body temperature will be a good bit warmer, especially for a 15K such as the Tulsa Run, he said.
You could wear arm warmers, which can be pushed down and off once you're headed up. Fleet Feet has some by Mizuno and Nike for about $30.
"The worst thing is when you're done," said Dreiling, alluding to how you may be hot and wet with sweat afterward, and you might not have clothes to change into immediately. So think about that before Saturday morning. If someone is going with you but watching from the sidelines, ask them to hold a bag of clean, dry clothes for you, like track pants and a jacket that's windproof.
But a jacket during the race? That's overkill, Dreiling said.
Bridge closed; race may affect crossings
The 23rd Street Bridge will be closed, but the 11th Street Bridge (Southwest Boulevard) and Interstate 44 Bridge (51st Street) will remain open.
Concentrations of runners may prevent any traffic crossing - including emergency vehicles - for up to 15 minutes. Emergency response units will be staging on both sides of the race course for public service.
Street parking prohibited within staging areas.
Vehicles in the towing area will be subject to towing from 10 a.m. Friday to 10 a.m. Saturday. Vehicles parked on the race course are subject to towing from 6 a.m. to noon Saturday.
Original Print Headline: Running on empty
Jason Ashley Wright 918-581-8483
Eating wisely and hydrating wisely can make your Tulsa Run experience more successful. The race is Saturday. Registration for the run closes at noon Thursday. CORY YOUNG / Tulsa World file