Thanks for the extra input folks. There is a balance to be found for eating the night before and the morning of the run.
She decided not to run on Wednesday and Friday night last week, but took on a 10 mile Sunday morning run yesterday. Normal morning routine, although she took some Lucozade with her in addition to her bottle of water. She found the extra days rest and Lucozade a massive help. She had to walk for a short section, but returned home much happier compared to last week. It was great to see her enjoying her running again and seeing her make progress. Two small bottles of Lucozade was consumed, and only a few mouthfuls of water.
She is going to cut down from four runs to two runs and a short gym session a week. Even I have found four runs too much, and my left knee has been sore of late, so I rested up last week as well and will be cutting my running down now that I’m doing 12 miles on a Sunday.
All of these changes improved her long Sunday run which is the main objective, and next week she'll tackle the same distance and route again but try to improve her time, and reduce how much she has to walk. She also has been focusing on her breathing technique, as she was breathing too shallow which we think was bringing on the stitch.
Thanks for the advice and pointers, I’m hoping we’ve knocked this on the head and she can focus on her training.
I think having an earlier breakfast or going out slightly later would help. I'm sure when we started our Sunday runs they were from 11am, and as they have gotten longer we have started earlier (closer to 10am). Normally breakfast is 1hr 45min before the run, so I'll see if she can extend that time.
Unfortunately there is no chance of doing any other morning runs which is a shame. As I have been doing lunchtime runs from work which I think have helped my body adjust to running at different times of the day. She only runs after work or Sunday mornings. We have been Sunday morning running since early November, so I would have thought she'd have gotten used to them by now.
The reason for the extra water before the run, is because she had issues after a timed 10k event where she felt sick afterwards, which St John's Ambulance staff put down to lack of hydration, so I don't think it would be that. I'll ask her about her breathing techniques as I understand short shallow breathing can cause a stitch, where as deep "belly breaths" can help to reduce this.
Breakfast is a bowl of porridge and half a banana. She makes sure to drink a couple of glasses of water beforehand, and takes some water with her whilst running. Her pace is slightly slower than that of the shorter runs during the week and she has dropped the Wednesday night run, as she was finding four runs too much in a week now they are all getting longer.
She is happy with the amount of sleep she is getting, although I think an extra hour wouldn’t hurt, and I know the night before the race we’ll both be getting to bed a bit earlier. Alcohol consumption is almost zero, and we never drink the night before a run so it’s not that either.
Not sure about running on “empty”, but I understand what works for one person doesn’t for someone else, so that is something else to consider. I did mention dialling back the distance of the Sunday run, but that idea didn’t go down very well. She is keen to keep the Sunday runs long to help prepare for the race. But as I mentioned above she is now dropping the Wednesday night run, so that may help. If that doesn't work then reducing the distance for a week might be a good idea.
It’s clear she doesn’t have the energy she needs first thing in the morning, as she felt drained within the first couple of miles and it’s just a case of finding the right balance. We are going to pop into our local Sweatshop on Saturday and have a chat with the staff and maybe pick up some gels. Maybe adding an energy drink during or possibly during the run might be enough.
My girlfriend and I are both undertaking our first Reading half marathon (RHM) in mid-March.
We have both been training since early November and with 4 runs a week (Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun) and some of resistance & core exercises we are starting to make some decent progress in terms of the distance we can now cover.
I managed my first 10 mile run on Sunday and felt good afterwards. Sore in places, but with 7 weeks to go I’m feeling happy that I will be able to make the full race distance in a respectable time. My girlfriend on the other hand really struggled on her 9 mile run. The problem seems to be with running on Sunday mornings from around 10am. We need to get used to running at this time in the morning, as the race starts at 10am. She can cover good ground on a week night, but Sunday mornings do not seem to agree with her. We get up 2 hours before our run to have breakfast. She makes sure she drinks lots of water whilst running, but nearly always ends up with a stitch and doesn’t seem to have any energy whilst out.
She needs to get this sorted, as she’s not enjoying her Sunday runs atm, which is effecting her confidence, and that’s making her nervous about race day.
Does anyone have any advice as to what she can do to get round this lack of energy?