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How I ran 20 miles whilst fasting

The most frequently asked question on my running and juicing blog is ‘can I run whilst on a juice fast?

There are two schools of thought.

A) You should use the fasting time as a period to reflect and relax. Many experts suggest avoiding the tv, not to watch the news, do some yoga.

B) You are addicted to running and cant just stop for 7 days.

Impossible! I am firmly in Camp B. I have been juicing since early 2010. I was very overweight, unfit, drinking too much, eating all the wrong foods. I am an intelligent guy and I knew it was bad but I just could not stop.

Fast forward 18 months and I am now 60 pounds lighter and have run two half marathons.

For 99.9% of that time I have been vegetarian (I had the odd slip up – I also went vegan for part of that following the acclaimed Engine 2 diet) and that came about because of No Meat Athlete, juicing and the musical legend that is Morrissey.

In fact right now the only dairy I eat is egg this is such a long way from where I was in 2010. I digress.

Two weeks ago I came back from a wonderful vacation on Hawaii and thought to myself that I needed another detox, time to recalibrate the body and time to declare war on the final 20 pounds that I need to banish! I thought I would run a few miles ever other day to keep myself ticking over whilst on the juice fast. Yeah right, you know what us regular runners are like.

I unintentionally found myself clocking up 20 miles as a weekly total. Way above the 6 or 7 miles I thought I would do. I also ran my fastest 6 miles at 56 minutes and 30 seconds. A whopping 90 seconds faster than my previous PB.

Sure I felt more tired after the runs than usual. Remember I was eating nothing, no banana or peanut butter on toast. I was strictly drinking four home made fruit and vegetable juices a day. I can almost hear you thinking, ‘where does he get his protein from?’

This is my standard juice, in fact it’s my staple juice throughout the juice fast. 2 apples 1 cucumber loads of kale 4 celery stalks ½ a lemon lump of ginger I juice it all together and then empty into my blender where I add: frozen pineapple Ice And here comes the good stuff… tablespoon of chia seeds (got No Meat Athlete to thank for that.) tablespoon of hemp scoop of Vega (optimizer) Coconut water So in effect this is action packed with great nutrients and minerals for runners.

Everyone’s physical make up is different. I can’t say if you personally can run whilst on a juice fast. What I would advise is going out there to run a mile or two and gauge how you feel. I think most people will find they will have more in the tank than they think. After all you are not fasting as a Moslem would at Ramadan and surviving on H20 alone.

My body is thriving (not surviving!) on freshly extracted juice from a wide array of fruits and vegetables.

Sure I was tired after my 6 miler but I made sure I drank some of the above which I prepared before leaving and guzzled coconut water for the rest of the evening. I cannot begin to explain all the major improvements in my life since juicing. It got me running and that’s a gift I will always cherish and be grateful for. Being 60 pounds lighter and meat free feels great!

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Comments

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Comments

  1. Thanks so much for this post. Tomorrow is day 5 of our juice cleanse. I've been trying to run and lift throughout and it feel so tough! I feel like I've got no strength after a mile, although lifting isn't quite as bad. I'm used to running (completed my first full marathon in June) so it isnt a lack of training that's getting me. Ill try adding chia seeds to my juice to see if that helps, any other suggestions? I'd relax and let the cleanse do it's thing, but have a race on September 18 and October 1st.

  2. Hi Nikki

    I would slow down your runs if you are tired after one mile. You might even want to do a run/walk, you know 10 mins run with 1 or 2 mins brisk walking in between.

    I do use Vega Plant Based Performance Optimiser. You can pick it up at Whole Foods.
    http://myvega.com/products/vega-sport-performance

    Its vegan so very good for you, I add it to my water when I get out there and run and I think it really helps.

    Check it out.

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