How to Fuel for a 300+ Mile Ultramarathon

How to Fuel for a 300+ Mile Ultramarathon

The Speed Project (TSP) is a one-of-a-kind ultramarathon - Spanning 300+ miles, the race starts in Los Angeles, California, and finishes in Las Vegas, Nevada. It is a unique endurance effort that can be taken on in a 6-man relay team or as a solo racer.

These types of endurance efforts require significant training, logistical planning, grit, and fuel. A race like this, or any other endurance race, will physically and mentally test you. Many obstacles could arise, and you will be forced to adapt. While many variables during a race are out of your control, proper fueling and nutrition are not one of them. The food you consume, the amount of water you decide to drink, and the electrolyte balance you maintain will make or break your effort during a race. This fuel guide will show you how our team is taking on fueling for TSP and help show how you could fuel for your next race.

As I refer to “fuel” throughout this document, I am talking about the food, supplements, liquids, and electrolytes you will consume to keep your body (the engine) moving at peak performance. Think of a vehicle - when that fuel tank is topped off and complete, your car can perform at its highest performance (especially when all other parts are tuned up - this is why we train, rest, and recover). As you start running out of fuel (gasoline or electricity for the Tesla lovers), your vehicle begins to slow down, stutter, and eventually stop. Your car can’t run on fumes - just like your body.

Regardless of how you decide to fuel for your race, you must practice your fuel strategy during training. This means you should practice running/training with the foods and supplements you will use during the race. Why? Everyone responds differently to certain foods. You can comfortably eat a turkey sandwich for lunch while working at your desk but try eating that same turkey sandwich between 5k segments through the desert. It may work for you, or it may not, but I would personally prefer to find out before I’m in the race.

In the same way we train our minds, legs, and lungs, we must also train our gut to balance digestion and movement. If you are a fan of training fasted (on an empty stomach in the early mornings), I encourage you to start training fueled. Your performance/recovery will improve. You will most likely not run fasted for your race, so let’s train like we race. The goal is to eliminate unpredictable variables and control the outcome of success.

Bare Performance Nutrition (BPN) is the nutrition participant for in LALV TSP in 2024. We offer a wide range of strength, endurance, and wellness products. For the race, we will be supplying racers with the following BPN products during the effort. I will provide some information on each and how to use them.

Please keep in mind that fuel requirements will change based on your size (height/weight), length of race (half marathon, 100-miler), and weather conditions (the warmer the weather, the more electrolytes you will require to maintain proper hydration).

Carbohydrates and electrolytes will be your best friend during this race and all other endurance efforts! The body can efficiently utilize carbohydrates as a source of energy (fuel), and those that aren’t used right away can be digested and assimilated in glycogen (your body stores carbohydrates in the muscle and liver).

G.1.M SPORT

We created G.1.M Sport to be a fast-acting, easily digestible carbohydrate powder with a fully loaded dose of electrolytes. Think of this as your fuel base. Each serving contains 20 grams of carbohydrates and 350 mg of sodium. The carbohydrates will ensure you have the energy required to cover the distance and maintain intensity. The electrolytes will help avoid dehydration and cramps and replace what is lost through sweat.

How to use:

Mix 1-2 servings (scoops) in 12-16 ounces of water and consume before or during your run. The carbohydrate used in G.1.M Sport is called Cluster Dextrin and is very easy on the stomach, so you can drink it right before your run or gently sip it during your segment.

GO GEL

The Go Gel is our take on an endurance gel. Each gel contains 24 grams of carbohydrates and 110 mg of sodium per gel. It is a whole-food, simple-ingredient product with a base of apple juice concentrate and apple puree. It is easily digestible, convenient to carry, and fast to consume.

How to use:

Consume a Go Gel 15 minutes before the race. During a race we recommend 1 Go Gel every 30-45 minutes.

GO BAR

The Go Bar is a light-weight, slightly sweet, oat-based nutrition bar with 200 calories per bar and 36 grams of carbohydrates. This is an excellent option to fill your stomach but not leave you feeling full and sluggish.

How to use:

Consume before, during, or after training for a fast acting and easily digestive energy source. Endurance fuel or simply a great snack. Perfect for ultramarathons.

G1M Sport is your liquid form of endurance fuel. Go Bar is your solid form of endurance fuel.

ELECTROLYTES

Our electrolytes contain 500mg of sodium per serving with a fully loaded electrolyte profile. Consuming electrolytes consistently during the entire TSP effort will be critical to maintaining proper hydration levels and avoiding dehydration symptoms, especially during the day when it’s hot and sunny.

How to use:

Mix 1-2 servings of our electrolytes in 12-16 ones of water and consume throughout the entire effort. As a baseline starter - expect to lose about 1,000mg of sodium per hour of running. This varies from person to person, but you should replace what you lose between your food sources and electrolyte powder during the race.

I want to share how I will use BPN products to support my fuel strategy during the race. I will also eat whole foods, which I will discuss later in this fuel guide.

Products like G.1.M Sport, Go Gel, Go Bar, and our Electrolytes are helpful to ensure you are fueling your body with the energy it needs without hitting the road feeling overly full, sluggish, or uncomfortable. Our products were formulated and created to work with your training and not against it.

WHOLE FOODS

We created G.1.M Sport, Go Gel, Go Bar, and our Electrolyte powder to SUPPLEMENT your nutrition plan. As you can see in the fuel plan example above, there is a combination of supplements and whole food items like bagels, fruit, chicken, rice, etc since I will be running an ultramarathon.

The key is to balance maximizing the calories/nutrition/fuel you can consume without feeling sluggish, overly full, or uncomfortable. It requires discipline, intentionality, and a plan. That plan must be adaptable, as you never know how your body will react on a specific day, but if you fail to plan, you should plan to fail.

CARBOHYDRATES

Carbohydrates will serve as the primary source of fuel that our bodies prefer to use during endurance efforts like TSP. It’s wise to load up on carbohydrates 2-3 days before the race starts to ensure muscle glycogen is full of carbohydrates. After consuming carbohydrates, it can typically take about 24 hours from digestion to storage, so starting 2-3 days out allows you to store glycogen efficiently. I like to consume about 3 x bodyweight (pounds) in grams of carbohydrates the first two days of the carbohydrate load and then about 2 x bodyweight (pounds) in grams of carbohydrates the day before the race.

Choose carbohydrate sources during your carbohydrate load and TSP that your body tolerates well. Sources that are dense in carbohydrates but lower in total volume/weight are great options. This allows you to get more carbohydrates in without feeling overly full and uncomfortable. It’s essential to reduce and limit (or at least monitor) the dietary fiber consumed during the load and race. Too much fiber can cause gastrointestinal discomfort, gas, bloating, and/or disrupted bowel movements - the last thing you want during a race.

PROTEINS

While carbohydrates should be the primary macronutrient consumed during our race, including protein during the effort can also be beneficial. If training for an ultramarathon, you shouldn’t worry about consuming many protein sources; it can help balance some of the meals/snacks. While carbohydrates are essential, total calories are just as necessary. Consuming an excess of protein is unnecessary, but adding a few sources every couple of hours can help accumulate calories and provide you with essential amino acids for muscle recovery and bodily functions.

FATS

Again, just like protein, dietary fat is not the most essential macronutrient for our race, but can be very helpful to maintain caloric intake. Fat is more calorically dense than protein or carbohydrates. While protein and carbohydrates carry four calories per gram, fat has nine calories per gram. Adding nut butters, avocado, trail mix, or seeds helps you stay on top of your caloric requirements and energy.

WATER/SALT

Besides the fuel you consume, the key to having a successful race is your hydration strategy. Staying hydrated is not just drinking water but what you consume alongside that water, too. Electrolytes. This can be accomplished by adding an electrolyte supplement to your water sources and adding salt to some of the whole foods you are consuming during the effort. One of the fastest and easiest ways to reduce your training ability is by allowing yourself to become dehydrated. It’s not hard to become dehydrated, and the name of the game is being proactive. Just as you will build a food/nutrition/fuel strategy, you should also make a hydration strategy. If you can stay on top of hydration without falling behind and becoming dehydrated, you can maximize your performance and run a strong race.

 

 

GOOD LUCK AND FUEL WELL!

 

OUR BEST SELLERS

SHOP ALL BESTSELLERS
Vanilla
Fudge Chocolate, @hide-plp
Cinnamon Roll, @hide-plp
Blueberry Muffin, @hide-plp
Chocolate Peanut Butter, @hide-plp
Milk N' Cookies, @hide-plp
Nutter Bar Blast, @hide-plp
Strawberry, @hide-plp
Unflavored, @hide-plp
4.8
Rated 4.8 out of 5 stars
8,028 Reviews

Whey Protein Powder

Servings - 27

$44.99

  • Vanilla
  • Fudge Chocolate
  • Cinnamon Roll
  • Blueberry Muffin
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter
  • Milk N' Cookies
  • Nutter Bar Blast
  • Strawberry
  • Unflavored
4.9
Rated 4.9 out of 5 stars
4,942 Reviews

Flight / Pre Workout

Servings - 30

$44.99

  • Prickly Pear
  • Blue Raspberry
  • Strawberry Kiwi
  • Pink Lemonade
4.9
Rated 4.9 out of 5 stars
329 Reviews

Go Gel / Endurance Gel

10 Single Serve Gel Packs

$29.99

  • Mixed Berry
  • Apple Cinnamon
4.9
Rated 4.9 out of 5 stars
1,276 Reviews

Electrolytes / Hydration Drink Mix

Servings - 50

$44.99

  • Strawberry
  • Salted Watermelon
  • Lemon Lime