Ironman Run Injury – Hacks to keep you injury free

Lots of veggies and lots of protein!

Rob Cummins Ironman Bike

Today on The Kona Edge we find out about Eulali Gouws’s Ironman nutrition strategy and talk about her diet for training as well as what she eats during the race. (Read the transcription of our chat here)

 

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Podcast Transcription:

 

BRAD BROWN:  Let’s chat some nutrition here on The Kona Edge as we head back to Johannesburg to catch up with fellow South African Eulali Gouws. Eulali, welcome back onto the podcast, thanks for your time today.

EULALI GOUWS:  Thanks Brad, nice to be back.

BRAD BROWN:  Eulali, let’s talk about your nutrition. We haven’t spoken about it much all in all but before we get into race day and how you approach race day from a nutrition point of view, let’s talk about day-to-day nutrition and how you approach things from a nutrition point of view, just your general day-to-day stuff and how that relates to your training and making sure you’re fuelled up for your training.

EULALI GOUWS:  It’s a good question. I am one of those people that love food. One of the main reasons for starting triathlon was, if I do triathlon I can eat as much as I want! It’s not always the case! I try and stick to a very healthy diet, so no processed foods, especially now leading up to an Ironman, I’ll really watch what I eat and try and keep it clean, lots of veggies, lots of protein. I’m one of those that’s recently started trying to get lots of healthy fats, not when I’m racing, but just day-to-day I’ll rather stick to high fat, high protein and low carb, it just settles better with my stomach.

BRAD BROWN:  As far as approaching race day, talk me through the couple of days, three/four days leading up to a race, how do you approach that? Do you change anything? Is everything exactly the same as it was in training?

EULALI GOUWS:  Yes, I try and pretty much keep it exactly the same. I do eat a little more carbs them just to make sure the glycogen stores are filled up for race day. Other than that, just trying to keep it clean, staying away from, I’m a bit lactose intolerant, so I’ll stay away from dairy and stay away from dried fruits or anything high fibre that can cause some chaos on race day.

BRAD BROWN:  Let’s talk race day, talk me through the day. Do you wake up and have breakfast? Are you one of those people who can have a full breakfast or do you keep it really minimal before the race starts? Talk to me about your actual strategy through the race?

EULALI GOUWS:  No, I try and keep it minimal. I’ll have some oats, some nut butter some energy drink and protein before and then obviously can’t take anything in during the swim but I’ll have just a gel before I start the swim with some water, especially for the Ironman because it’s quite a long swim and it takes me over an hour to get through that.

On the bike I’ve got a tip actually not to take in any nutrition for the first 10-20 minutes, just have your stomach settled from the washing machine, so I just sip on some water that I have on my bike and then from half an hour into the bike I actually start eating on the clock. I’ll make sure I start with a gel and then I’ll have half a bar the next half an hour. That also helps me get through the bike. I’ll make sure I get my solids in on the bike. I’ll eat lots of energy bars on the bike and then hitting the run I mainly stick to gels. I’ve found that having to eat actually upsets my stomach which can cause chaos on the run.

BRAD BROWN:  That second half of the run, when you’re really struggling is there anything in particular you do or is it a case of whatever you can get down, whether it’s Coke or gels you just try and get it down and keep it down?

EULALI GOUWS:  Yes, I’ve realised I should stay away from the Red Bull! That doesn’t help me at all. Anything that goes down, so I’ll focus, firstly I’ll stick to gels and then on that last lap which here is the last 10km, I’ll switch to the Coke. There’s nothing more amazing than a Coke, that really helps to get you through that last 10km.

BRAD BROWN:  I always joke, I haven’t seen it at Ironman but in some of the road running races here in South Africa, particularly at Comrades, which we spoke about in our first chat is we’ve got a drink here and I don’t know if you get it anywhere else, but it’s Crème Soda, an ice cold Crème Soda in one of those runs is the best thing I’ve ever had. There’s a hint, if you can get some Crème Soda, make sure it’s ice cold, you are winning on that last lap.

EULALI GOUWS:  I’ll put in a request!

BRAD BROWN:  If only they could put a fridge in your special needs bag because you would fill that with Crème Soda, that’s for sure. Then talk to me about nutrition mistakes, have you made any big mistakes and what have you learnt from it?

EULALI GOUWS:  Yes, actually in Kona, it was so hot and the run course there is really difficult because you run on the Queen K, which is the highway. It’s quite monotonous, you only see black, it’s black tar, you’ve got the black lava field and it’s so hot and I ran through this one aid station, I just grabbed whatever I could and there I actually grabbed a Red Bull and the next thing, I just felt really bad and I realized Red Bull is not for me on a run.

BRAD BROWN:  Stick to what you know. Eulali, it’s been great catching up, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed our chat and all the best, I look forward to following your progress beyond Ironman South Africa and to Kona 2020, best of luck in Barcelona.

EULALI GOUWS:  Thanks Brad, I really appreciate it, lovely chatting to you.

About Us

Brad Brown is a 40 something age grouper that dreams of one day qualifying for and racing on the big island (He may have to outlive everyone in his age group though).

Morbidly obese in 2009, Brad clocked in at 165kgs (363lbs) at his heaviest.

He's subsequently lost a third of his body weight on the way to a half Ironman pb of 5:06 and a full Ironman pb of 12:21.

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