Eat a lot more

Eat a lot more.  That’s the word from Amanda and Laurel and my post-race blood work.  It seems like I was catabolizing a bunch of protein during the race.  This is bad, of course, because it can cause rhabdomyolysis.  Potential next steps: kidney failure and death.  (Don’t worry Mom and Dad, I plan on actively avoiding the next steps.)  It seems like part of the issue is that I had low glycogen stores when I started the race.  I didn’t have enough sugar reserves to draw on and my body was forced to use protein for energy.  What’s difficult for me to understand (and why I’m bothering to write all this out) is how that came to pass.  I eat enough to maintain my weight, which is a nice healthy weight for a 5 foot-ish woman.  So if I wasn’t losing weight, how could I not be eating enough?  Darn you history degree!  I’ve always relied on my weight as a good indicator that I was eating enough.  Apparently, I can’t.  (Frustration!)  From what I understand (it was hard to hear because I was busy being defensive), my metabolism has probably slowed to deal with the calorie deficit and I’m probably constantly catabolizing muscle.  (If you’ve seen the size of my enormous biceps, this will be hard for you to believe too.)  Anyway, I’ve been given a 25 calories per pound guideline for my daily caloric intake.  This doesn’t include what I take in during a run.  We’ll see what happens at the Nueces 50 mile in March .  I certainly feel a bit out of my depth understanding it all, but Laurel and Amanda are very good at what they do, so it seems like a good time to just follow directions and try to understand the intricacies along the way.  And it’s not every day you get told to eat more.  Sadly it wasn’t “Eat more Jelly Bellies. “

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4 Responses to Eat a lot more

  1. olga says:

    I’ve seen your enormous biceps. I also picked you up a few times and carried around (just for fun, people, not what you’re thinking…or that she was incapable of walking on her own). I am not sure, frankly, if you have any glycogen stores. Or left-over muscle tissue, for that matter, with these races that eat into that. Because you certainly don’t store any of the fat you could turn to while slogging at, like 9 min/mile pace at mile 90, and start breaking down fatty acids for fueling. Yeah, right…try and find those – need microscope?

    • lizahoward says:

      Are you challenging me to an arm wrestling competition at Nueces? 😉 (OK, so you’d squash me like a bug, but maybe we could time how long it takes you to win. Do you have a watch that measures thousandths of a second?)

  2. Marcy says:

    Liza, I’ve just started reading your blog and I love your writing! Gem of the day: “it was hard to hear because I was busy being defensive” – hope I can remember that 🙂
    Thanks for your posts!
    -Marcy

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