Carb loading for 10K?

15 messages
08/03/2007 at 11:12
Hi everyone?

I've not been in a race for two years and finally I'm getting back into it. I've got my first race coming up (LINCOLN 10K)

faced loads of injuries and slipped disc recently but I'm still determined to run.

my question is how effective is carb loading? especially over a short distance as 10K?

does it help?

I've never really followed carb loading before and manage quite well. ran a half marathon in 1:35 on two weetabixs = not clever i know!

any advice is welcome.

all I want is to beat my previous best time on that course which is 42:35. it should be possible to beat as my fastest 10k is 38:23 so fingers crossed.

anyone else running this race?
08/03/2007 at 11:33
Don't bother carb loading for a 10k, it's a complete waste of time. Just eat your normal, healthy diet the week before.

A half marathon on a breakfast of 2 weetabix is perfectly okay. I know people who train and race with no breakfast.
08/03/2007 at 11:38
Yeah carb-loading is irrelevant for 10k. Just make sure you're well watered and have a proper warm-up to help get you up to race speed comfortably.

2 weetabix sounds like good prep for a HM to me! :)
08/03/2007 at 11:54
Re breakfast. I cant stomach any. Ive tried allsorts. So Im one of those who can race without brekkie. Wish I could stomach 2 weetabix beforehand!!!!

The ten k's Ive done Ive just eaten my usual stuff really. Just made sure that I had plenty of water the day before. Though I think having something with pasta for my lunch gives me a psychological advantage!!! And steak for tea has always produced good results!!!
08/03/2007 at 11:59
cool thanks for your advice.

the Half marathon was late in the day. thats the only reason i thought two weetabixs was a little low for both breakfast and dinner.

do you really think warming up helps? I personally do a few stretches and thats it. i take more time mentally warming up than on my muscles. but i suppose everyone is different.
08/03/2007 at 12:05
Bit of a jog for a warm-up should be enough in case you want to set off at a certain pace. But the last time I warmed up for a race was about 4 years ago so can't really remember what you're supposed to do.
08/03/2007 at 12:07
Don't stretch before you run, it's counter productive. You'll be making your muscles relax and that's the last thing you want just before you run. For a 10k you want to warm up by running gently for a couple of minutes to get your heart rate up and get your muscles working.
08/03/2007 at 12:16
I thought stretching pre warm up shortened the muscles making them less effective and more prone to injury? So yes, don't strech before.
08/03/2007 at 13:19

I'm no race veteran but in my limited experience I've benefited greatly from a proper heart-beat raising warm-up. My 10k times are in the same 'ball-park' as yours - you're not hanging about and I'd guess that your HR would be over 90% of max pretty quickly into the race. I reckon this is much less of a shock to the system if your CV system has already had a bit of a work-out, e.g. a good couple of miles working up to a reasonable pace, and working up a decent sweat (well, I do anyway).

I definitely see the purpose of a 10k warm-up being to get the body, including cardiovascular system, into 'race-gear' rather than just limbering up or stretching out a few muscles.
14/03/2007 at 06:24
thanks all. makes sense when i think about it.

but i thought that the more relaxed the muscles the better they are at performing?

maybe i have this wrong.

14/03/2007 at 07:20

You have enough glycogen stored in your muscles to get you about 16 miles without needing fuel. That makes carbs for 10k irrelevent.

If you want to start your 1/2m at a target pace rather than using the first mile to warm up then you need to warm up before the start. Ten minutes gently jogging with maybe two sets of maybe 6 - 10 strides will get your muscles into working mode as will a few gentle stretches.

Take your cue from the top runners. They would not think of starting a race without a comprehensive warm-up programme.
14/03/2007 at 07:54
Apogee, if your muscles are relaxed then they'll perform worse. Think about it. If they're all relaxed then how are they going to contract quickly to get your legs moving?
14/03/2007 at 08:58
It doesn't work that way. You need elasticity in your muscles and connective tissue for them to work effectively. They need to be loose, warm and relaxed.
Many people also have post-race massage or sports massage to get back the length and elasticity in their muscles.

On your theory you will run better after racing when your muscles are tight and contracted?
14/03/2007 at 09:08
Try the grey 'Training' tab at the top then go to Racing Basics and Enjoy the Day.
14/03/2007 at 09:36
Apogee - I echo all the far wiser comments. Just eat normal the week before, and don't do anything unusual that your body might take offence at. I'm also doing the Lincoln 10k; will be running (hopefully) about three minutes behind you. Being hydrated is the most important bit - although, at Lincoln, that involves using some of the crappest race toilets known to man!

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