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Should you gorge after a running a 5K?

Imagine the scene…

You’ve just finished running one of the fastest 5Ks of your life. Elated, hands on your head, you lazily walk through the finish area. After turning in your chip, exchanging smiles and kind word with other runners, you head to the re-fueling station.

And there it is, a cornucopia of treats & delights. 8 flavors of Gatorade, 4 types of soda,stuffing face vitamin water, bagels, yogurt, granola bars, Lemonheads, Redhots, Gummi bears, apples, oranges, bananas, Eli’s Cheesecake, pizza, Snickers energy bars, and rows and rows of Dunkin’ Donuts.

Have you ever heard of such a spread?

Well, that’s what you get after joggling the Run to Remember 5K. And if you’re not careful you can completely undo the physical benefits of the running the race. Let’s see how I did.

Caloric Accounting of a 5K Race

Calories burned during race = ~450

Calories taken in after race

2 donuts = 400
Gatorade = 175
Gummi Bears = 100
1/2 Bagel = 200
Pizza = 150
Yogurt = 175
Cheesecake = 350
Cherry Pepsi = 160

Total = 1710

Final caloric cost of participating in the race = 1260 or half a pound.

Then, there was the giant brunch at Yolk (giant waffle & 2 eggs = 640). Next was 4 hours at the Beer on the Pier fest at Navy Pier which featured too many beer samples to count (appx = 1700). From there it was out to Toons to watch the Derby (beer = 100). Then out to Take 5 for some food (Turkey burger & fries = 900). Then to Piece for a couple more beers and a slice of pizza (600). By 10:30 pm, I was done and just a little bit drunk. The long run the next day was challenging.

Total caloric intake for the day = 5650!

Geez, it’s no wonder I can’t qualify for Boston. Of course, this was an anomaly and I did run 14 miles yesterday without eating nearly as much.

Nutrition Lesson of the Day

You only burn 150 cal or less per mile so try to avoid a huge calorie intact right after a race. You worked hard, but not that hard. Juggling and running do not give you carte blanch to eat and drink whatever you want.

Incidentally, I was pretty happy with my race. My unofficial final time was 20:37. It wasn’t a PR but it was probably my third or fourth fastest time ever. I also made it the whole way without a drop. My favorite part was the pre-race juggling that thoroughly entertained a crowd of spectators.

This Post Has 6 Comments
  1. Nice job on the time! Wow, wow, wow! I’m sure you consumed all those calories because your body demanded it! Yea, yea! That’s the story, and we’re sticking to it!!

  2. You might want to add that all they had so much that we were able to take home huge bags of candy. I ate 1/2 bag of red hots sitting on my couch yesterday. Atleast we ran first and it was certainly a very fun day to say the least.

  3. They should come up with a race that combines running with competitve eating.

    Good work on the no-drop 5K, or as I like to say, you ran a “clean” race. I’m still waiting for the elusive “cealn” marathon. Albert Lucas told me the other day that he ran 14 marathons without a single drop.

  4. I had heard Albert Lucas did a lot of marathons but I didn’t realize he did that many. I wonder how many he’s done. I did read that when he ran (at least the first one) he was surrounded by a team of “blockers”. This would help keep the crowd out of his way.

    I’ve only done 1 marathon “clean”. That was the San Diego marathon in 2005. But if I had blockers, I could’ve done a few more. On occasion I get bumped.

  5. I heard a body builder say that he could do the “Supersize Me” diet and still lose weight. When he is training for competition he often burns 5,000 calories a day. Wow.

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