And by the joys I mainly mean the food. The seemingly endless array of meals and snacks I can consume to 'fuel' my runs. Without the danger of putting on a stone in a week and ripping my jeans in half when I bend over.
I'm all about the snacks. Always have been. You can trust me with your secrets, pets, children, money and at a push, your life. But I cannot be trusted with snacks. Especially cakes, biscuits, chocolate, popcorn.......I will eat it all. I have in the past. Like a toddler left unattended at a buffet table!
Herein lies the joy of ultra running. You can 'carb load' before you run, eat gels that taste like donut jam as you run and refuel.....or as I see it REWARD afterwards.
Basically on a long run day I will be eating for all of my waking hours. And dreaming about food when I'm not conscious.
In case you think this all sounds rather overwhelming I've compiled a few tips on fitting snacking into your busy schedule.
It's also important to keep an eye on pace and time. I've been known to speed up a 12 mile morning run in order to make a certain fast food joint before they stop serving McMuffins.......
And if you drag yourself up a bit earlier on Sunday, you can fit in a brunch at one of the restaurants that serve breakfast until noon at the weekends. Top tip: Always have the pancakes.....and the bacon. I mean your salt levels probably need attending to. It's a recovery thing.....
In fact bacon is basically essential running food. I've recently discovered 'bacon chips' and they've blown my mind. They're sprinkled with paprika so must be good for boosting circulation too.....right? They serve them at Bread Meats Bread on Lothian Road Edinburgh if any local readers are interested.
Quick kit note. When buying a small running rucksack think "Can I fit a box of cake or a Chinese takeaway in here?" It MAY come in useful one day.
And finally celebrate every holiday/occasion/anniversary with a running pal by going for a run and indulging in the appropriate food afterwards. Pictured below are the cakes my running friend, her family and I ate after my birthday run (I'm born near Halloween) Obviously I'm celebrating pancake day with them too......must get some Easter runs booked in too....
I'd hate to think there's a Oreo milkshake, sticky toffee pudding or anything with a melting middle that I'm not converting to glycogen
Run cat girl run x x x