The Run Down - The RunVermont Blog

This Rookie’s Ramblings, (Krysten, #3): Itchy Bum and Late Night Fun

by Krysten on February 25, 2013 · 10 comments

in This Rookie's Ramblings (2013)

Happy Monday, runners and readers-

Back at it again! I hope that everyone enjoyed their week and managed to stay warm, dry, and positive despite all of the gloomy weather. This past week was a busy one for me, and for the first time since I began training (and probably ever), I felt as though running was a nice way to take care of myself.

Running is something that I have felt pretty insecure about through the years. Until I was able to run one mile without feeling totally overwhelmed, I would not even consider running with another human. I would actually try and avoid running anywhere that I thought would bring me within proximity to familiar people and places. I think that I was embarrassed of my running shape and fearful that I would not be able to fulfill the planned distance. Somewhere along the road, things changed dramatically; now I have a hard time running alone! This buddy-running has kept to the realm of friends and acquaintances and has been a fun and healthy way to spend time with people who I care for.

Now, until last week, I had successfully dodged any type of buddy-running that could be considered “date like”. In the spirit of taking risks and putting myself out there, I agreed to a nighttime run around the town with a new, cool dude in my world. Don’t worry Mom, I let people know where I was in case things went sour.

But, it went great!

We did a five-mile loop that went from the O.N.E. –> North Ave –> Burlington High School/campground –> bike path –> up College Street. I moved at a pace similar to that of honey making its way out of the jar, but he stuck with me. We chatted the whole way, and he was pretty jazzed to show me this route. Side note- has anyone seen the traffic cones up in the trees by the dog park on the bike path? Way cool at night.

After the five-miler, I had an uncomfortable case of the Itchy Butt Syndrome. Talk about a nice end to a hot date. What is that about? Why does it happen? Can it be prevented?

Itchy behind aside, this Thursday night run was a success.

Confession: I have skipped out on one of my mid-week runs (one 4-miler, two 3-milers) for the past three weeks. Any training tips from busy folks out there? I know that I need to get my act together and get all of my runs in, but shoot, it’s hard. I would have hit the 100-mile mark had I kept up with the schedule. Oh well, next week it is!

In an effort to be a bit more planful, on Friday I looked into the weather forcast for the weekend to try and figure out what day would make the most sense for my long run of the week. I was able to wrangle my friend Jameson into running most (7.7) of the ten miles with me on Saturday, and was so thankful to have him there. I picked him up at Oakledge after three solo miles, and we continued in reverse fashion on the Thursday evening route.

I typically do not hit my stride until around mile three, making the miles pre-Jameson pretty grueling. I talked myself through about nine different ways I could sabatoge the run and not have to do the whole thing. Upon realizing that I was being outrageous, I sucked it up and pushed through. Things became much more manageable- enjoyable, even- after picking up my good friend.

After the long haul, I decided to skip out on my Greek yogurt smoothie and instead went with a glass of Lemon-Lime nuun and half of an avocado with a little bit of salt. It sure felt right, but is this an okay post-run snack? About twenty minutes later, I ate the other half of the avocado and some chicken that I had made the night before. No tummy grumbling this week!

Next week’s long training run tapers to seven miles. I think I’ll start incorporating some type of “food” into the experience the following week when I push for 12. It seems to me that a lot of the “goo” type concoctions come in peculiar flavors and shapes. Margarita cubes? Espresso-flavored goo? Jelly beans? I wonder if my stomach and I will be able to get down with fueling while running. What are some things that have worked for folks on long runs? Is it unheard of to bypass all of this stuff and stick with plain old food?

The topic of this upcoming week’s Marathon 101 is nutrition, and it’s coming at the perfect time. I’ll be sure to report back with any goodies I pick up.

I’ll close out this post with a quote from Jacqueline Gareau that lives on the inside cover of my runjournal:

“The body does not want you to do this. As you run, it tells you to stop but the mind must be strong. You always go too far for your body. You must handle the pain with strategy. It is not age; it is not diet. It is the will to succeed”


Thanks for reading!

Respect your body & have a great week,


{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 christa February 25, 2013 at 6:07 pm

Pink lemonade Nuun is my favorite. I’m a real food eater. I don’t like gu, I have ate honey stingers during a long run and they are pretty good.
Hope you are well!!

2 Tim February 26, 2013 at 1:49 pm

I’m a big fan of sticking with recent run food technology. It is daunting how many options there are, but the good thing is that you have lots of flavor and types of fuel options. For instance my go to fuel for most Long Runs are the Clif bloks (I started with cranraz, went to mountain berry to margarita, now i’m on tropical flavor), maybe it’s just me but I feel like they seem to spread out the energy release or last longer than a gu. However I always pack a gu (started with Accel raspberry now onto Clif Mocha and am in heaven) for the later miles of a LR or marathon when even chewing takes up too much precious energy. I all about eating naturally outside of running, it just seems like these companies have figured out a few things that can be helpful. Maybe try flavors and mediums that might suit your palate?

3 Elizabeth February 26, 2013 at 4:51 pm

I stick to GUs. When I did VCM 2 years ago I tried to try all of them, and I decided (all personal opinions of course!) that Honey Zingers made me want to vomtron everywhere (yes, vomtron), Clif Shots were too natural tasting – at least the Strawberry ones – it reminded me of eating a spoonful of strawberry jam, seeds included, and I can’t have anything gummy in my mouth that prevents me from breathing normal or getting stuck in my teeth. Leandre and I had our disagreements about WHICH gu flavor was the best – but she made me come around, and the chocolate isn’t bad!! By mile 22 though, I could only stomach the plain ones. And I definitely agree with Tim – try to find something that doesn’t require much chewing for those later miles of the marathon. It was all I could do to muster the extra energy to get down the GU.

4 Holly February 26, 2013 at 5:52 pm

I agree with the above post regarding GUs . Stick to the more plain flavors- the citrus in any of the gels gets my vote. I cannot eat a whole package- I do half at a time and seems to work great, with no stomache (or intestinal) upset.
As for the “itchy butt”? Try Aquaphor! Works great, and no chaffing!:)

5 Anonymous February 27, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Jameson-I’ve heard of him. He goes by the nickname of Diesel Power and has epic dance moves??!?

6 Krysten February 28, 2013 at 10:17 am

Thanks for the comments! As a follow up, I’m pretty sure the itchy behind is related to cold weather and numbness..warm days are totally itch free.

7 Erik March 2, 2013 at 11:30 am

Good post! As a food lover I feel compelled to add my two cents as I think it can make/break people –

My experience has always been to not over do it with the food. On long runs, >15 miles I would typically eat something small every 8-9 miles and when I did it was usually whole foods (banana, dried fruit (no sugar added), homemade bars). I experimented with gels/gelbloks but since those types of carbs weren’t part of my diet at the time they didn’t fit well. gelBloks suck even more because you have to chew them and they get stuck in your teeth and that is a total pain when your motoring and are just trying to breathe. In the end I found myself most often with bananas and a water bottle/camel back that I would add supplements/powders to. I think giving your body something familiar on your runs makes sense because it is processed easier from both a physical and psychologically standpoint; to that end I know people swear by food but I’ve honestly found it to be the case (with my body at least) that less is more, if you’re constantly eating (4-5 mile increments) I think it throws off your groove, like I said, I would usually eat if I was going >15 miles, otherwise not. This isn’t for everyone though, regardless of what you choose make sure your post-workout meals (<30mins after) are adequate and that your eating 5-10 hours after long runs is purposeful. I have a fantastic book that I can lend you that talks all about food nutrition, "Paleo Diet for Athletes: A Nutritional Formula for Peak Athletic Performance," its one of the best books I've found on the topic.

8 Zpora March 2, 2013 at 12:01 pm

Well this will provide all kinds of fodder for our weekly discussions! You are amazing – hope you get some good down time this week. I’m a big fan of shot blox but also plain old potatoes – i like Yukon Golds boiled until they taste a bit sweet with plenty of salt and a little pepper on them. They get a little mushy in the bag, but I have always found them pretty palatable on long runs.

9 Tara March 5, 2013 at 1:02 pm

i love honey stingers too!!

10 Steve March 6, 2013 at 11:15 pm

I do mostly strawberry.banana (I think) Power Bar gels on long runs…> 10 miles. I start at 8 mi and take another one every 4 -6 miles. Make sure to have water with them. Also if you find a brand you like make sure either the race will provide that brand or you bring your own. Best of luck and look forward to more posts.

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