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Abdominal Cramping - Run

Monday the 25th saw me compete in my first triathlon of the year (Thames Turbo Race 3).

I had a problem on the run leg however which lost me a few minuets at least. Under normal conditions I do a 5km run in 20 minutes or so (with transition) however after 500m I noticed something was not right and before hitting 1km I had developed terrible stomach cramps across my whole abdomen and almost stopped running completely at one stage, ended up finishing in 24 minutes, 4 off my target time!

I'm not entirely sure why this happened and the only thing I've done differently compared to other triathlons in the past is not eat anything beforehand (due to the early start of this event compared to others I've done), could this be the reason? I've also heard it could be posture, but I haven't altered this at all... I also run early in the morning (7km usually) without food in my stomach.

Any ideas or suggestions very much appreciated!


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    BlinkybazBlinkybaz Posts: 1,144
    It sounds like you might have been suffering from no food! If thats the only real difference then it maybe your body is used to haveing food on board!
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    hazohazo Posts: 18
    Hate it when races don't work out.

    I over carb'ed before a run last year - resulted in the same symptoms.

    Did you fuel on the bike ok? Over doing 'smart gels' makes me throw-up.

    I think lack of porridge is favourite!
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    danny_sdanny_s Posts: 235
    That happened to me in my first race on a hot day last summer. I never figured it out, but run/jogging a 5k was embarassing and I attribute it now to over hydrating/eating on the bike.

    In a sprint even up to olympic, as long as you've got food in you before you start then you shouldn't need any nutrition to get around the course. Some gels can help and I like to suck one down in T1 and another about 3-5 mintues before T2, but if you've been training then you've got enough glycogen stored up to go for at least 90 minutes without running dry.

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    willieverfinishwillieverfinish Posts: 1,381
    Dehydration perhaps ?
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    husslerhussler Posts: 237
    I had the same problem at the weekend during Beaver Middle distance.... I had swam, cycled and ran the first 5 miles well.. (9th Overall) then was hit with the stomach cramps....Half Marathon took me 1:48 instead of the usual 1:20-1:25 including T2, depending on course profile :~(

    I have also not done anything different from races before apart from not eat properly before hand.... I felt as though I had ate enough before starting but looking back I actually left it around 4-5 hours from Breakfast to race start....

    I am putting it down to not eating enough!

    And as the same has happened to you then Im more convinced now:) Fingers crossed we can both have a better race next time.
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    BritspinBritspin Posts: 1,655
    Race nutrition does not start as soon as the gun goes off (one could say it never ends), but several days before, how many & how much depends on how seriously you are taking things & the length of the race. Remember that the gel sellers job is to sell you gels...you do not need to take on any nutrition during a sprint...unless you plan on being out there as mentioned for 90 mins to a couple of hours.

    I have raced on water only 2x this year, both sprints & put up PB in both, but I am used to this & oly distance is different of course. Hydration is key at any distance & my 3.5 hour ride sunday I only drank 500ml & felt fine, so I guess like anything the body specifically adapts, to a specific stimulus...I also ate nothing either...altho' caught up later!
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    WoolyWooly Posts: 63
    I had the similar if not as severe syptoms on Race 3, mine was down to guzzling the SIS drink on the non-compete zone, didn't do it before but it was hotter so thought it a good idea!!

    It wasn't![:@]
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    en51nmen51nm Posts: 41
    Thanks for all the responses. I think I'm going to put it down to lack of pre-race food, although I would like to test this somehow!

    Does anyone have any tips or insights into their own food intake regime in the final days/hours before an event?
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    husslerhussler Posts: 237
    Practise what you intend doing on race day in training.

    If its a sprint, you can get away with just water, unless like britspin says and your gona be out for longer than 90mins.

    Olympic distance is slightly different, I use gels and water and a good carb based meal couple of hours before the race or previous evening if its an early start.

    Why on earth I chose to only eat an energy bar an hour before my race start is anyones guess, prob cos I was running around like a blue arsed fly trying to get things sorted and put up with the parents who had come to watch me race, argue with each other!

    Set a day where your gona do a practise 'race' or hard session involving 2 of the 3, preferably bike/run. Then the day before have a good carb based meal, write down what you have and how much, then on the 'race' day do the same again and write all nutrition down.

    Do the session, see how it goes, write down all performance data etc then if it doesnt work out, ie you get the cramps again etc, try it again another day (after enough rest etc) and adjust your nutrition.... more nutrition if you hit the wall, less if you felt bloated etc.

    Give it a try.

    Im doing a 90min race pace ride followed by a 90 min race pace run on friday, so ill be practising my nutrition plan for that. Although my coach has me doing this because I dont have another race to practise nutrition on before my first A-race in 3 weeks... Bala Middle National champs.... where I hope Ill win a medal, or at least come close... I know that the 90 min ride isnt gona be the race distance time on the day, but the run will more than cover it for the distance and thats where my problem has been this year.

    Good Luck:)
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    hazohazo Posts: 18

    Day before race:

    Make an effort to drink more water than usual - little and often.

    Never been a fan of stuffing myself silly with pasta the night before, so carb's are again little and often.

    On the day:

    Porridge, raisans, honey, pumpkin seeds (my normal breakie) - no less than 2 hours before race start.

    'Smart gel' 30 min's before the off (for the caffeine). Only ever use gels I've tested during training.

    Refuel with gels every 30 - 45min's (depending on how I'm feeling).

    Takes about 80min's without fuel to feel the effects - so not sure I really need to take as much tube goo as I do.

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