Couch to 5K
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10k runners, is there anything I should do differently (or stuff I should bring along) for the longer distances?

I did 8k the other day (my longest run) and the only discomfort I found was a spot of dizzyness when I got indoors, I deduced from that that I should maybe eat a banana (or half?) about an hour before I go out but am curious as to whether I should bring anything else/do anything else?

I ask because I've just read Morningglory's (great name) blog where he mentions taking glucose tablets with him and it made me think perhaps I cannot treat it like an elongated 5k.

8 Replies

Hi. Well done on doing that 8k run. It impresses the heck out of me!

You'll have guessed from that I'm no long distance runner but do try to understand the physiology side of the sport. The general advice seems to be that for up to an hour of fast-paced exercise, we shoudn't need any supplements (eg water or 'sports drinks'). But I guess it's really down to how you feel. If you get a dry mouth, take a drink. If you feel fine, there's no immediate need for one. Not sure about glucose tablets but, having read about which energy reserves we use in exercise, I'd be sceptical. A banana gives a decent amount of carbohydrates and, when running, we generally need those rather than sugars.

Hope that helps.


Cheers Malcy, I hadn't set a goal for the run, I just felt good so kept going. To be honest I often feel thirsty when running but have never felt I need to bring water with me, I just have a few sips before I head out and probably a half a pint, sometimes more, when I get in.

I run early so the eating before I go out thing is potentially difficult as I understand it's best to give yourself time to digest food before you run. I get up for runs at 5am, however I do tend to wake often before them (nerves or anticipation, I'm unsure) so while it shouldn't be a problem initially, once I'm further down the line in this running thing I imagine this won't continue to be the case and I'll have to set the alarm for 4am to eat. pain in the hole!


I think I have mostly treated it like an elongated 5k, although my pace is slower. I don't take supplements, taking water would be sensible (if like me you tend to sweat a lot), you could add juice if you feel you need the sugar. As for eating before, most people on here seem not to but I have to because my blood sugar tends to low. Seems extreme to set your alarm that early though, how about trying a good snack before bed instead?


I remembered this had come up before & a sudden drop in blood pressure can also be the cause:


Thanks Notbad.


I hate running first thing in the morning - Brutal enough doing it with breakfast. I have a small bowl of porridge half an hour before I go and that feels ok. Seven minutes in the microwave so it cooks while I'm getting dressed. I'm moving towards 10k too, and I'm not finding my longer runs any different, in terms of what I need. I thought it might be quite nice to have some water with me but can't be arsed carrying it.


I prefer it to any other time but it's practical too as there's no way I can do it at lunchtime and know I wouldn't go out after coming in from work. I'm the same re water, can't be arsed either.


I didn't do anything special for the 10k, as I have been doing 10k's in my training. I did check whether I should be eating carbs the night before but everything said I didn't need to for a 10k.

I only used the glucose tablets because someone once gave me one at a Parkrun but I nearly choked on the one I tried to chew yesterday at the start of the race. Apparently, the gels are much better to use but not sure I will bother for a 5 or 10 k again.

Yesterdays race was at 1.30 p.m. so I ate normally the evening before. In the morning had a bowl of porridge (which is my normal breakfast) 2 cups of tea. When I got to the race I had a cereal bar about an hour before. I didn't drink too much cause I was too worried about wanting to go to the loo half way round. I took two small sips of a drink on the way round but only cause it was so windy my mouth was dry.


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