Day 63 – EU – Spain [Rest Day in San Feliu De Guixols]

6th February 2020
Run: 0km

I have been asked many times lately how I handle my nutrition. Do I follow a diet plan, how do I watch my intake? Here is my take on nutrition so far 

One of the things that attracted me to this run-the-world journey, is that there is a lot of unknown. There’s no books on the shelves on how to run 650 marathons back to back. Or how to train for it. Or what is the best nutrition for it. What’s the best recovery strategy. How much sleep one needs. And so many other things.

I am going to have to work things out for myself. And that’s the appeal.

Last year as I geared up my preparations, I got unsure about nutrition for a while. I had done some calculations and the results seemed absurd (8,000 Kcal a day?). I asked Tom Denniss (2012/13 world runner) about his intake during the world run. I liked that his answer was about finding out what works for me, as much as not being too worried or too directional.

Since I started the world run, my criteria for good nutrition are:
1. I don’t run out of juice while I run
2. My recovery is unaffected
3. I remain injury and pain free
4. I don’t go through a drastic weight loss
As long as these criteria are fulfilled, I must be doing the right thing.

You may be surprised to read that, 2 months into a regimen of running 6 marathons a week, I have not lost much weight. I can see I have lost a little fat around the upper body, arms and waist mostly. But in general, my body shape is pretty much unchanged.

I do feel much stronger, I eat whenever I am hungry, I have not been shy about ordering two main dishes for my lunch on occasions.

I do not take any supplements, vitamins or sports/ energy food or drinks.

So far, my daily routine for food is as follows (I always go out for lunch only – other meals and snacks are from supermarket supplies):

6:30 – A solid breakfast of chocolate chips brioche and orange juice
8:00 to 14:00 – Snack once or twice during my run (cheese and bread & chocolate treats)
14:30 – Very robust lunch (large piece of meat, veggies and fries, bread, beer, dessert)
19:00 – Light dinner

That currently works for me and is made easy by the fact that I always find a place to eat for lunch. I also find supermarkets in all the places I run into. This is the luxury of running in Western Europe.

Things will change throughout the journey. I am very aware that the crossing of Australia, for instance, will involve a completely different take on my nutrition – as food availability will be scarce and I will need to carry several days worth of food on the road… But that’s a worry for later!

*Note: All the pictures in this blog-post have been taken in Girona, where I spent the day with my parents. They actually went around sightseeing whilst I rested in a coffeeshop most of the afternoon… old age! Below is some nicely strange street-art I found on a wall, titled “Flies of Girona” (“Mosques De Girona”):