Training

For Endurance Mountain Bike Races and similar events, such as the Karapoti Classic, Crazy Man, Colville Classic and the Rainbow Rage
By
Gary Moller
DipPhEd PGDipRehab PGDipSportMed (Otago) FCE Certified, Nutra-Life & Kordel’s Certified Natural Health Consultant

© Gary Moller 2004 Last updated 28 February 2007

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Table of Contents
Introduction ..................................................................................................................................... 3 Max Telford was one of seven (fool?) hardy runners .............................................................3 Lorraine Moller was voted NZ Marathoner of the..................................................................4 The Karapoti Challenge, no matter how you try to do it, requires extremes of endurance and power.......................................................................................................................................4 The Karapoti Classic Race – how it usually pans out .............................................................5 Train your fat metabolism ............................................................................................................... 6 • Have a nutrient-dense diet...............................................................................................6 • Reduce sugars and refined carbohydrates .......................................................................6 • Cut the caffeine and other stimulants..............................................................................7 • Throw out the carbohydrate supplements .......................................................................7 • Do the three long rides each week on an empty stomach ...............................................7 • Drink only water during training..................................................................................... 8 • Eat heaps between training sessions................................................................................8 • Do two shorter rides per week.........................................................................................8 • Train at the time of day you intend to race .....................................................................8 Karapoti Race Day .......................................................................................................................... 9 • Peaking ............................................................................................................................9 • The pre-race meal and during the race ............................................................................9 • Lighten your load ............................................................................................................9 • Start slow – finish fast...................................................................................................10 1972 Auckland to Wellington Road Race..................................................................................... 12

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1. Introduction
For cycling great, Brian Lambert of
Masterton, a Sunday ride was to head off over to Palmerston North, down to Paraparaumu, a leisurely climb over the Akatarawas to Upper Hutt and then a steady grunt over the Rimutaka ranges to get back to Masterton. It is little wonder that, in 1980, or thereabouts, he broke his own Auckland to Wellington non-stop cycling record, completing the distance in less than 20 hours with the assistance of a few cold pies along the way. This record is all the more astonishing because he rode almost the entire distance into a cold Southerly wind and he wiped out on the wet railway lines just 800 meters from the finish line. I entered a 10k grass track race in Masterton the following day and who should turn up for the race? None other than Brian Lambert, looking rather bleary-eyed from his exploits less than 12 hours earlier! He thrashed the field, lapping me in the process; his final lap being a demonstration of withering power. Nobody has ever attempted to break his Auckland to Wellington record; this despite the road being shorter, smoother and less hilly; and despite the vast improvements in cycling technology.

Swimming phenomenon, Phillip Rush, trained up to 18km per day in a pool, under the
watchful eye of his coach, the late Tony Keenan. This was during the 1980’s when Phillip reigned supreme as the Prince of Marathon Swimming. Phillip would meet with me 3 times a week for additional training sessions in the Poneke RFC gym. These workouts were so intensely gruelling we would fog the windows with sweat and I sometimes crawled out of the gym on my hands and knees at the end in a state of rubbery exhaustion. Phillip always relished the occasions when an unsuspecting upstart athlete joined in. I always made sure there was a large bucket strategically positioned for them as their youthful complexions turned a pale green. Two regulars for punishment were brothers Marcus and Matthias Hubrich who both performed with distinction at the Sarajevo Winter Olympics (1984) and became NZ’s first professional slalom skiers. They were fit boys. Phillip set numerous marathon swimming records, including being the only person to swim the length of lake Taupo and then back (Of course!). He had a prior booking in Taupo hospital, but was more interested in cracking the champagne at the finish than a warm hospital bed and IV line. Phillip’s crowning achievement was setting 5 records during the single swim when he became the only person to complete a triple non-stop crossing of the English Channel. His main problem during that swim was dodging large ships, assorted debris and oil slicks. Most of Phillip’s swimming records remain unchallenged today. Phillip is regarded as the greatest ever marathon swimmer because of his combination of speed and unstoppable endurance.

Max Telford was one of seven (fool?) hardy runners who, in 1972, set out from the
Auckland Post Office to run to Wellington Post Office (refer my notes on this race here). Max completed the distance in just 6 days (I cannot recall the exact time). He later set records for

running the length of Death Valley – there and back (of course!) and running down and back up the Grand Canyon. Death Valley was so hot they kept a supply of frozen running shoes in a freezer in the camper van and swapped shoes every mile. To finish off his American Excursion, he merely ran from Ankara to Nova Scotia! Apart from the divorce, he finished that run in good health. I understand that he now lives in contented retirement on a Hawaiian island with a beautiful Island babe. Max is legendary because, like Brian and Phillip, he had speed to burn as well as remarkable endurance.

Lorraine Moller was voted NZ Marathoner of the Millennium for good reason. Besides, she’s my sister, so
she cannot escape mention when I am recounting personal experiences of athletes who displayed awesome combinations of speed and endurance. Lorraine held many NZ records over distances from 800m to the marathon and had an international running career spanning a record 28 years. She still holds the NZ women’s 50 mile road running record that she set some 25 years ago in Auckland during what was a training run as part of her track racing build-up. Her time was about 5 ½ hours. In the tradition of super athletes, like the great Peter Snell, these athletes produced astonishing performances of extreme endurance and they covered these long distances at speed. Moreover, they demonstrated an amazing consistency at producing world class performances time and again. They all had something in common which will become apparent as you read on.

No matter how you try to do it, mountain bike racing requires extremes of endurance and power. Any event that goes for longer than 2-3 hours is an extreme test of
power and endurance. Take the Karapoti Classic for example: Throw in the extra weight of a bike, the copious sticky mud, many technical sections and several massive Karapoti hills that take a slow tortured grind/plod to the top of each one at maxed-out heart rates and the Karapoti Challenge exceeds every criteria as a test of power and endurance. When you enter the Karapoti you need the power and endurance of a Max, Brian, Phillip or Lorraine – plus the refinements of what we have since learned over the years through the sports sciences.

The common denominator of these great endurance athletes is the late Arthur Lydiard. All were influenced,
one way or another, by Arthur Lydiard the greatest athletics conditioning coach of all time. Without the aid of modern exercise physiology, Lydiard orchestrated the perfect symphony of speed, power and endurance. He is regarded as the most successful middle and long distance running coach in history and his system is as valid today as it was 50 years ago. Done properly, his system guarantees personal bests and peak performances on the day. To properly apply the Lydiard Method you require a reasonable understanding of the theory and how to apply it. Regardless of how much time and effort you put into training, the biggest challenge is maintaining energy supply. This is because the big hills on the course, including the Devils Staircase, force long periods of extreme exertion. These long periods of exertion are a drain on critical energy stores and, no matter what you eat and drink during the race, depletion is probably inevitable.

2. The Karapoti Classic Race – how it usually pans out
You have done the training and you feel great. The hooter sounds, you take off through the river, and leap on your bike. You are near the front of the bunch and you are feeling great. You fly up the Gorge and hit the big grind to the top of Deadwood. A few Gels and gulps of water along the way, and you are still feeling OK, although the legs and lungs are burning on those steep climbs which you manage to ride all the way, other than for a couple of rough spots and slower riders putting you off your lines. You are excited: you are on course for a personal best. A minor spill or two down the Rock Garden, but no serious damage, other than to the ego, and then it is into the muddy slog and slide up the Devils Staircase. Now you are starting to hurt. You also discover the hard way that you forgot to fit the metal studs to your shoes. Damn! Damn! Damn! With all of the slipping backwards, the Staircase has you really working hard; all your muscles are beginning to ache, your bike is getting heavier by the minute and you are wondering over and over, in your head, why you ever do this crazy stuff! After a quick drink and banana at the top of the Staircase, it is back on your bike heading to the top of Titi. You don’t get very far – gear suck caused by earlier spills and gumming mud from the Staircase cost you several minutes riding time. By the time you hit the summit of Titi you are struggling and you are losing a place every 10 seconds it seems. Leg cramps set in and your back, shoulders and arms ache like hell, but you struggle on. One thing about these races is there is never any pulling out. You hit Big Ring Boulevard at pace but this is short-lived – a puncture sees to that – you are just not concentrating! Repairs are made and you are back on your way, but your legs have cooled and you struggle with even the slightest climb. Your thighs scream with every contraction, your arse is raw, your arms are shot and concentration is dim at best. How you got to the bottom without a spill or another flat is anybody’s guess! The last Power Gel and water is consumed as you hit the dreaded grind up Dopers Hill. Along with all the other riders about you, you croak after the first 20 meters of loose rock. Having lost any sense of dignity by now, you resign to walking. This is 40 minutes of painful slog up Dopers, punctuated by infrequent bursts of pointless gear-grinding riding. Body and mind are screaming out - ordering you to lie down, but you struggle onwards and upwards. You are dead thirsty – that muddy puddle looks refreshingly inviting, as does that news helicopter above! “If I was to crash about now, they would have to fly me out wouldn’t they?” After what seems an eternity, you hit the summit, but what you thought would now be an easy rollercoaster descent is a hellish series of slippery high speed descents and sharp climbs that as good as finish you off. Your arms can barely hold you on your bike with each slam into a rut and your neck muscles are so tired and cramped that your head keeps jolting forwards. The headache feels like a migraine. Surviving the steep descent down to the river and despite the severe cramps, you manage to stay on your bike as you wildly bounce your way down the Gorge. Only God knows how you stayed on your bike and did not puncture as you took the worst lines at every turn. Delirious, you hit the Akatarawa River at speed and fall in to the delight of the crowd! You try to run your bike to the finish, but your legs won’t work properly. You finally finish – God knows how. You are euphoric, but privately disappointed and angry that your time is 20 minutes slower than last year. You lost a whole hour over the second half of the race, as compared to the first half. You are physically shot and your bike is not much better off. How did this dramatic dying act in the second half come about?

The main problem facing riders during these events is muscle glycogen depletion, with dehydration and mineral depletion possibly adding to the problem. Working muscles use a mix of fat and glycogen. Glycogen is how carbohydrate is stored in the muscles and elsewhere in the body like the liver. There is only from 1.5 – 2.5 hours supply of glycogen, depending on the athlete and the intensity of effort. As exercise intensity increases, so does the use of glycogen in relation to fat; so as we hit peak heart rates, such as during the Deadwood climb, we use nearly 100% glycogen. Nobody can keep that up for long. As we near glycogen depletion, our wheels begin to fall off: muscles cramp, the brain fails, we make bad decisions and performance dies. This is because we have to rely increasingly on fat, plus the little sugar we get from what we eat as we go for ongoing energy production. The body does not like this. It is not used to this and it responds by gradually slowing energy production. The point at which this happens during intense exercise can be quite sudden, as well as dramatic. When this happens, the term is “hitting the wall”. Here is what you can do to at least avoid the worst of glycogen depletion and soften the wall so that when you do hit it, as you will, it does not do as much damage:

3. Train your fat metabolism
Lydiard’s athletes always included several weeks of combinations of fast long and very long steady paced runs. This is the sort of training I used to do year after year when I was in serious athletics training. Every Sunday morning, regardless of the weather, we strode a hilly 22 mile course. Sustenance for these long runs was little more than a pre-run cuppa, a piece of toast and honey and the occasional suck on a lemon or two plucked from roadside tree. When running long and hard the worst one could do was to have food or liquid in the gut. Lydiard’s athletes not only built massive oxygen uptakes through this kind training; they also became extremely efficient fat burners, thus conserving limited glycogen stores. Whether intended or not, the 12 weeks of endurance training on an empty stomach trained the body to work at pace while conserving muscle glycogen. Being better than their opponents at conserving their glycogen stores, athletes like Snell and Walker always had the gas to inject withering bursts of speed when it really counted. You can do the same by including three long rides per week; rides lasting up to four hours (Depending on past training, you will need to start off on much less While doing this:

• Have a nutrient-dense diet
Read the various nutrition guidelines and e-publications on nutrition that is found on http://www.healthandlifestyle.co.nz/e-books/ . Download the Super Smoothie recipe off http://www.healthandlifestyle.co.nz/recipes/ and have this as your pre and post exercise supplement. Consider adding quality multi mineral and vitamin supplements to your diet.

• Reduce sugars and refined carbohydrates
Don’t get sucked in by slick advertising and endorsements for nutritional aids that are based on research that is mostly industry funded. There are people out there who want your money and

they are very good at getting you to part with your cash! There is a common misconception in sport that a high carbohydrate diet is necessary for performance. This is simply not true and definitely not true if you have trained the way I am recommending here. A balanced diet that consists of mostly natural, unprocessed, nutrient-dense foods is the key to athletic consistency as well as good health. A diet that is saturated in simple sugars and refined carbohydrates prevents your body from shifting into fat metabolism and learning to do so efficiently. Matters become complicated with time because these refined foods lack essential nutrients like trace minerals and can, for example, set the athlete up for problems with muscle cramps years later.

• Cut the caffeine and other stimulants
Again, there is a common misconception heavily promoted by powerful commercial interests and their industry funded research that caffeine and related stimulants improve endurance performance. This is only true (possibly) if you are not a habitual caffeine consumer. These substances interfere with the body’s natural fat metabolism processes and are highly addictive. You will find unwanted stimulants in all kinds of products: energy bars, fat burner dietary supplements, coffee, tea, colas, energy drinks, chocolate, herbal stimulants, party pills, nasal decongestants, cold and flu medicines, headache and pain remedies, anti-depressant medicines, cigarettes and more…. Read the product labels and look for any stimulants like caffeine and ephedrine in them. Reduce these to a minimum, or none at all.

• Do not take carbohydrate supplements including sports drinks during training
Don’t believe the commercial hype or industry-funded research findings about carbo supplements. You don’t want them during training because they are counter productive to improving athletic performance. Infusing your body with massive doses of nutrient poor carbohydrate products during training prevents your body from learning to use its fat stores efficiently while conserving its glycogen stores. Furthermore, such practices are contrary to the basic rules for a healthy diet and are the formula for future health problems including gum disease, obesity and diabetes. Some dentists want health warnings placed on sports drinks. I agree. A practice to avoid is sipping on sweet drinks while riding. This is because the mouth is not being washed by saliva, so the sugar cakes the teeth, gums and tongue, causing an explosion in bacteria. The result, which dentists see, is rampant tooth decay and gum disease. Consume only fresh water when training.

• Do the three long rides each week on an empty stomach
This means your last feed is about 1-2 hours earlier. However, eat well and don’t start a long ride feeling famished. Get into having regular Super Smoothies that are packed with the nutrients you need for this kind of exercise. If you are a carbo-junkie, you might find that you develop intense sugar cravings as early as an hour or so into a ride. Don’t stop; drop the pace right down, keep it steady and avoid any intense bursts of effort, so that you can complete the ride. Drink enough water as you go to prevent dehydration and cut the ride short if you find waning concentration is affecting safety. Have a Super Smoothie within an hour of finishing. If you are doing a really long bike ride, like a practice ride around the Karapoti course, then take along plenty to eat, but in the form of complex carbohydrates with fats, some protein and various nutrients – buttered wholemeal buns filled with meat, egg, lettuce, avocado and tomato, for example. Taking food with you on long rides into remote places is as much for safety as for anything else. When you go into remote areas, you must take some food and spare clothing in case of a mishap or the weather turning nasty on you. Always go with two others and make sure that somebody at

home knows where you are going. You should schedule a couple of practice rides over the course as part of your preparation for the real thing. As the weeks pass and your body adapts, you will notice that the distances you cover before the carbo carvings set in is steadily increasing and your steady state speed is increasing all of the time and without the usual aching and burning muscles. You will eventually find that you can comfortably complete three or more hours of steady riding with your only sustenance being a bottle or two of water. You will have a ravenous appetite by the time you finish, of course, and that’s great!

4. Training rules of thumb
• Drink only water during training
Water is best. Not too much and not too little. Forget about expensive sports drinks – they are full of sugars that compromise your training fat metabolism and contribute nothing to good nutrition. Sugary drinks cause tooth decay, gum disease and bad breath. Be wary of commercial hype, questionable research and dubious athlete endorsements. Athletes get to the top through a combination of natural talent and hard work. Get your electrolytes through a balanced diet and a small selection of supplements. Tap water is fine to drink in New Zealand. If you are drinking bottled water use mineral water rather than distilled which is empty of trace elements. I recommend water that is sourced from the Blue Spring of my home town, Putaruru.

• Eat heaps between training sessions
Ensure that energy stores are fully and generously replenished between training sessions with a nutrient-dense diet, including the Smoothies. The longer and the harder you train, the more you must eat. If you are doing lengthy training sessions as outlined later on, you should find that any excess fat gradually melts away as the weeks pass. Refer to the notes on the Auckland to Wellington race for an illustration of the importance of having a calorie intake that matches expenditure from day to day. Here….

• Do two shorter rides per week
Include two rides of less than two hours that have quality technical content, including steep climbs and descents. These are additional to the three long rides. Throw in some high intensity burners. You need plenty of this kind of practice for steep, rocky hills. The Tip Track in Wellington is a good course to tackle on a regular basis, as is the fun-packed Makara Peak mountain bike park, or similar ones dotted around the country.

• Plan some epic rides
Break the monotony of training now and then with a few epic rides. This is the way to get really fit and to experience what mountain-biking is all about. For example; I had a business meeting in Christchurch (We live in Wellington), so we took our bikes down along with camping gear and we rode all the way back through Molesworth Station. It was a very tough three days but we got to see some amazing country and we sure did get fit! Other less epic rides can include a long weekend in Rotorua riding the Redwood trails, or doing rides like the 42 Traverse. These epics boost your fitness no end!

• Train at the time of day you intend to race
If your race starts at 9am, then most of your long training rides should be at that time of day, if you can do it. Otherwise, do your weekend rides at the time of the race. Your body will gradually adapt to be at peak athletic readiness at that time of day. It makes little sense to do most of your long rides in the afternoon or evening, if the big race is in the morning.

• Race, race, race!
Even if you consider yourself middle or back of the pack, there is only one way to get used to competing and that is to compete as often as you can. The biggest mistake riders make in preparing for a big event is to do nothing other than train, train, train. Every 2-4 weeks of your build-up there should be a race of some kind – short, sharp ones that you know your body will be fully recovered from within 2-3 days, so training is enhanced rather than interrupted. Do them for fun and adventure and to become a hardened professional. It is during these events that you refine your pre-event preparation, including what you do on race day. You will learn not only how to push yourself; but also how to pace yourself. Furthermore, if the worst should happen and you fall ill or get injured the week before the big race, all is not lost because you have had so much fun and adventure getting there. Enjoy the journey!

5. Race Day
• Peaking
Unless you are Lance Armstrong, do not do any strenuous or lengthy or excessively intense training sessions during the last 2-4 days before the race. Eat lots of nutritious food during the last few days. There is no great need to carbo load, if you have had a nutrient dense diet, including the Super Smoothie and a few key supplements for the past few months and if you have properly trained your fat metabolism.

• The pre-race meal and during the race
Stick to your usual nutrient-dense breakfast, but have more of it than usual, including a Smoothie. Throw in some C and B-group vitamins, a calcium and magnesium supplement and even some blood-thinning flax seed or fish oil if you like (these are available through www.myotec.co.nz ). But do not take or eat anything you have not practised with in training, otherwise you risk digestive upsets during the race. If you have been caffeine-free for the last few months, you might consider a cup of tea as well. One of the advantages of cycling over most sports, is you can eat while going hard out. So long as you follow the “Start slow – Finish fast” advice below, you can get away with having, say a Super Smoothie in the ½ hour before the hooter sounds and a few honey sandwiches and a chocolate caramel bar or two along the way (Assuming again, that you followed the fat metabolism training guidelines for at least several weeks). Drink plenty of fresh water immediately prior to the race starting, especially if it is looking to be a warm day. Empty your water bottle early on – it is better inside you where it is needed than weighing down your bike frame. Replenish your water supply as you go as suggested in “Lighten your load” below so that dehydration does not hit later in the race at about the same time muscle glycogen is depleted. For race day, consider adding an economical sports drink mix, like NZ made Nutra-Life Restore (Available through www.myotec.co.nz ), to your water bottle. I have even successfully used a “Mighty Milk” sachet mix during one Karapoti race – but experiment with these in training first, lest you suffer a stomach upset.

• Lighten your load
The lighter your bike, the lower the energy cost, which means you can either go faster or further – or both before croaking. The biggest gains are from lightening moving parts such as wheels and tyres, but take care not to sacrifice traction when doing a course like the Karapoti. Rather than carting an extra kilo or two of water around the course, including up nearly impossible slopes like the Devil’s Staircase, consider filling up at streams and at any water stations set up by

the race organisers. If you worry about contaminated water, carry a few water purification tablets – add one to your bottle of river water and wait 15-20 minutes before consuming it. The few minutes you lose filling up along the way will be regained many times over later on in the race. Reconnoitre your water stops during your practice rides over the course and note the fastflowing streams. If you are in wilderness areas of New Zealand, the water should be quite safe to drink, although there is a theoretical risk of giardia. I have been drinking out of NZ’s wild rivers and streams for decades and have yet to suffer an upset. Besides; if you are going to catch anything, it will be a day or two after the race, so who cares – it’s the race that counts! Avoid bogs, streams that flow through farmland and always gather your water upstream of your mates.

• Start slow – finish fast
In most cases, it is “Start fast – Finish last”! The best race is one that is perfectly even-paced. But this is easier said than done for mass bike races where you are liable to be swept along by the crowd. Resist the thrill of the massed start. Set a steady pace from the very beginning, even if that means you are initially near the back of the field. I know this is hard to consider when you have the flash bike and the tight-fitting spandex outfit and you are being passed by Granny on the left and a bloke on the right riding a Warehouse bike and wearing rugby shorts. And there is the risk that you might get held up at early bottlenecks. As a compromise, consider starting quite fast for the first few minutes so that you are in a good position leading into the first bottleneck. Once you have been going about 4 minutes, back off the pace, no matter how great you feel and settle in for the long ride. You may risk being held up by walkers on the first steep climb, but this should not be a problem because you have thoroughly practiced slow, steep uphill riding during training and you have the breath to call “Passing on your right!” Your priority over the first half is to conserve valuable glycogen stores and avoid any early spills or bike damage. Set a pace that has you doing the second half slightly faster that the first. Ninety percent of all riders do the opposite. You are going to be different. If you have paced yourself carefully earlier on, you will find you have the gas and the bike to begin gradually cranking up the pace as the race progresses. Those who passed you earlier, will be starting to struggle and you will begin flying past them. Still, don’t get too carried away; save the rest of your energy for the last quarter. Given that you get it right, you will finish at a steady pace, passing a hundred or more exhausted souls. Sure, you will be exhausted and your muscles will be tying up terribly; however; you will still have the concentration and just enough gas left in the tank to keep up a cracking good pace right to the finish line and the bonus of a personal best time. That’s the plan and so it shall be because you have done the training.

6. After the big race
What you do is really important. Get a Super Smoothie into your body within the first hour if this is practical. If not, have an effervescent multi vitamin drink (get these from www.myotec.co.nz ) and plenty of other food along with a wholesome source of carbohydrate, protein and fat. This could be in the form of a wholemeal sandwich with lettuce, tomato, cheese and salami filling and some fruit. However; this depends in part on how you are feeling. If you are terribly exhausted, you may find that your ability to drink and eat is poor for an hour or so. Listen to your body and only take in what it tells you it is capable of tolerating. Change into something that is warm as soon as possible. If you can, find a warm, sheltered place where you can lie down and have a 20 minute nap. If a massage is on offer, take it; but it should

be a gentle one that pushes the blood back to the heart. There is no place for a deep tissue massage immediately after a punishing event. The skin should be clean; otherwise the rubbing of the massage may cause a bad skin infection, depending on what you have been rolling about in earlier on. If you are going to stretch, make it gentle and do not overdo it. Your muscles are already exhausted and strained and they need a good rest and definitely not more stress and strain. Avoid standing because the heart is tired and you may be dehydrated and low in circulating blood sugar. The blood may drop to the legs, leaving nothing up top for the brain. The result could be that you feel nauseous and you may faint and hurt yourself. It has been a long hard season and this has been the big one. It is now important to take several days off. During this rest, keep up the nutrient rich diet, including a few key supplements. Keep your basic fitness by doing some exercise; but have a break. This means doing something other than cycling, although it might include your usual commuting to and from work. This can be an active recovery: Take a holiday; go climb a mountain, hike a trail or simply go to a tropical island resort and chill out. The main thing is to do something different. Once your recovery is complete (mental as well as physical) then it is time to commence your next build up over a period of three months or so.

Blow mind and body with this one!

7. The 1972 Auckland to Wellington Road Race
I was a young student at the time and a keen runner at the time and I followed this event closely at the time. These runners were legends: They ran non-stop from Auckland Post Office to Wellington Post Office. Basically, each runner ran each day till they dropped and then did it again and again. The runners were being monitored by a group of researchers at Auckland University and I managed to get my hands on their research which would appear to be long lost and forgotten nowadays. Here are the nutritional records of that amazing race. It was won in style by the great Max Telford (runner #1). These records highlight the importance of matching calorie intake with energy output if you are exercising hard day after day. If you are training hard and long, you must eat well. It also illustrates the importance of ensuring fluid intake is adequate. What it does not tell you is what I know about the winner, Max Telford – Max trained the Lydiard way – he was not only fast but also very adept at using his body fat stores. The combination of diet, plus the right training produced one of the most amazing feats of endurance in NZ running history. The amazing calorie intakes by the finishers while on the run all day for several days on end were only possible by the liberal use of liquid meals. Can you imagine consuming 14,000 calories in a single day and doing this while running! Max used NZ made Sustagen. The Super Smoothie recipe is my variation on the original Sustagen recipe. The Super Smoothie is more nutritious than Sustagen on its own as well as being cheaper.

1972 Auckland to Wellington Road Race
Group 1 – Did not complete
Total Calorie Intake

Runner Sunday Monday Tuesday
1 2 3 5910 6306 5018 7827 1854 2622 1593 777 1835

1972 Auckland to Wellington Road Race
Group 1 – Did complete – and order of finishing Total Calorie Intake Runner Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday 1 2 3 4 6786 5254 2611 10978 7405 7187 6266 11557 8385 4630 4804 9096 10473 6318 8164 10424 10317 6234 7059 6480 14321 2040 3901 ---

1972 Auckland to Wellington Road Race
Calories per day Finished (Range) Did not finish (Range) 7,900 ~ 2,611-14,321 4,000 ~ 3,800-6,500 4 Fluids per day (Litres) 8.25

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