Sharing feed schedule(s)(anonymous or otherwise) as a resource for others

loneswimmerloneswimmer Admin
edited September 2013 in Resources
Similar to @evmo's post on swim calendars, we're looking at various resources that we might be able to host for the benefit of more marathon and aspirant swimmers.

Feed schedules can be a mystery, especially early on. If you are interested in sharing yours and want to do so anonymously, can you email it to me? (You can get my email from my profile if that link doesn't work). We'll look at putting a collection up in a separate section to the [resources] category for others to see as part of an ongoing resource.

You can specify whether you want to be anonymous or otherwise. Also, please note for which what swim it was used. If it was one of the Channels, we'll all be familiar with the context. However if it's a lesser known swim, could you please include a brief synopsis? (Distance, time, water temperature).

EDIT: Delighted to see this topic finally take off in this format, so I edited the title slightly. thanks to the two people who originally PMed feed schedules, you want to just them up here so?

Comments

  • bump; so interested in learning from others on this.
  • If you go with 30 minute feeds, you can easily keep track of the time in your head. Drink on the :30, and drink + solids on the hour.
    Ron Collins
    Clearwater, Florida
    DistanceMatters.com
  • Thought I'd post it here and @loneswimmer can scrape it to put wherever he is collecting these.
    FYI - I am not one of the stud-muffins here. Just a slow, fat, 58 year old.

    My schedule is pretty simple:
    1) Night before: 2 capsules of ginger. (I am very prone to motion sickness)
    2) 2-2.5 hours before swim, 1 or 2 PowerBar or Clif PROTEIN (not energy) bars - the idea is to keep blood sugar levels stable & protein is good for that. If I eat any "real" food, it's probably oatmeal w/ raisins; no sugar or milk. Oatmeal is about the longest burning of the complex carbs, plus I like it.
    3) 1 hour before swim: 2 Aleve (I can't do this now because of stomach ulcer issues)
    3) 45 min before swim: 3 ginger capsules.
    4) 10-15 min before swim, 150 calories in 12 oz water.
    2) Starting at 30 min into the swim and then every 30 min thereafter, 150 calories in 12 oz of water.

    Current "recipe" for 1 serving of drink: 100 calories pure maltodextrin, 50 calories from a strawberry Clif Shot w/caffeine. (50 cals = 1/2 of a Clif Shot.), 1/2 scoop of Endurolytes (a Hammer Nutrition product). Clif Shots are basically maltodextrin and cane sugar (sucrose) with some electrolytes.

    No solids, although I have been known to beg for a small piece of a Snickers bar.

    I also have a number of Clif Shots on hand in case I feel like I need more calories, something that seems to happen often after 4-5 hours.

    If I am swimming in the ocean, I might have 2 capsules of ginger added at about 3 hours. Fair warning: It burns going down.

    BTW, I am convinced that the standard wisdom of a max of 300 calories/hour is wrong and believe that more can be done. I am currently working on a protocall to test this systematically during my training for next year's swims.

    -LBJ
    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go." - T.S. Eliot
  • My feed strategy is pretty simple: koolaid, with a rotation of gatorade every 4-6 hours. I dilute 50 grams of koolaid (or gatorade) powder into 750 ml of water to give a 6.7% solution (carbohydrate solutions are supposed to absorb best at 6-8%.)

    I am for 60 grams of carbohydrate (240 calories) an hour. I usually feed every 30 minutes, but go to more frequent feeds if the volume of liquid (900ml/hr or 30 oz/hr) is making me a bit nauseous.

    When nauseas strikes, I take ginger. (I read a study somewhere that said that people undergoing chemotherapy who took ginger for three days before treatment experienced less nausea after chemotherapy. I keep thinking it would be a good idea to have ginger pre-swim, but haven't tried it yet.)

    After I've vomited, I have my crew open up some Canada Dry Ginger Ale (it's made from real ginger, though I'm not sure how much). They flatten it out a bit by capping the bottle, then gently shaking, then opening the bottle a couple times. They fill a tiny bottle (like the 1.25 oz GoToob bottles), and toss it to me. I have a tiny sip, and tuck it down my suit, and then try to count off strokes (say, 250) before I stop and have another tiny swig. Doing this for about an hour seems to reset my stomach.

    @Leonard_Jansen: In diabetes land, we are taught "The Rule of 15": It takes 15 grams of pure carbohydrate 15 minutes to absorb. (Proteins and fats would slow that down). I'm sure there's individual variation on that, though. I'm comfortable with 60 grams of carbs (240 calories) an hour, and haven't really tried to push it. I know you absorb faster when your blood glucose level is low, and can do some fancy stuff by using fructose (I think?) to enhance absorption, but I think fructose is supposed to cause GI distress when consumed in large quantities.

    This may be good reading:

    COMBINED EFFECTS OF GLUCOSE AND FRUCTOSE ON FLUID ABSORPTION FROM HYPERTONIC CARBOHYDRATE-ELECTROLYTE BEVERAGES
    http://faculty.css.edu/tboone2/asep/LambertGP08AprilJEP.pdf
  • ssthomasssthomas Charter Member
    edited September 2013
    I like to keep my feeds pretty simple as well. I don't use solids or gels at all, ever. (Well, I tried one once, and it was nasty....)

    In a 24 ounce water bottle, I mix 4 scoops of Carbo Pro (400 calories) with about 1/4 a scoop of unflavored whey protein. I add water and a splash of apple juice for flavor. Mix.

    *Note, I used to use only 3 scoops and would get hungry. The addition of the 4th scoop eliminated that entirely. I've also tried Powerade, instead of apple juice, always resulting in stomach issues.

    I take a feed every 30 minutes. A 24 ounce bottle typically lasts me 3-4 feeds. (I try for 3 feeds/bottle, but often it takes 4 to get it all down. And sometimes, I can down a whole bottle in one stop...) I'm not real religous about how much liquid I'm consuming- As long as 24 ounces doesn't take me 5 feeds, I know I'm ok. I listen to my body- if I'm hungry, I drink more. If I'm not, I put down as much as I can handle.

    In some swims, where I've been hot, I will take a feed and then supplement with straight water. I don't use electrolytes.

    I usually pee a little at least every half an hour. If I'm not peeing at least every hour, I increase my water intake.

    And when my shoulders hurt, I add infant liquid Advil to my feeds.

    On my doubles, at the turnaround, I consumed 32 ounces of water with a powdered Gu Recovery mix. And carrots.
  • JBirrrdJBirrrd Member
    edited September 2013
    Thank you, Thank you. This is very helpful. Keep posting here. I am still trying to figure out what works for my body. 2013 was a pukey year for me. @Leonard_Jansen I too use the ginger caps pre-swim w/ a little candied ginger. Used to think it helped, but this year, not so much. I might try @JenA 's ginger ale during the swim.
    @ssthomas Yes...That liquid Advil is gold for my shoulders. I use high-test children's formula, not infant.
    I don't want to say what doesn't work for me, but I can tell you that I must have my 5 Hr. Energy shots on anything over a 4 hr. swim. Liquid happiness & a legal PED.
  • JBirrrd said:

    I say what doesn't work for me, but I can tell you that I must have my 5 Hr. Energy shots on anything over a 4 hr. swim. Liquid happiness & a legal PED.

    I may or may not steal that idea for my next long swim...
  • As with anything, test it out first on a training swim or two....but you knew that. :)
  • heartheart Member
    edited September 2013
    Note: I'm slow, so this may not be a strategy for record breaking.

    I feed ever 40 mins. The food is always the same: Half apple juice and half water in a 24oz bottle, with three scoops of Vitergo and half a teaspoon of ginger powder in every bottle. I down 1/4 of a bottle every time.

    Once, in Portland, I tried solid foods. Only diluted Gatorade on the half hour, a small scoop of mashed potatoes or mashed fruit on the hour. It worked out well calorie-wise, but chewing and swimming are not compatible for me, and the Vitergo/diluted juice strategy works much better.

    In Tampa, I started adding liquid Advil from Hour Four, which I think was too late in the game. Given that Tampa ended with a myofascial shoulder injury that kept me out of the water for many weeks, from now on I'll take liquid Advil from the very first feeding (I also tweaked my breathing, which I think was to blame for the shoulder injury, but that's for a different thread).
  • heart said:

    In Tampa, I started adding liquid Advil from Hour Four, which I think was too late in the game. Given that Tampa ended with a myofascial shoulder injury that kept me out of the water for many weeks, from now on I'll take liquid Advil from the very first feeding (I also tweaked my breathing, which I think was to blame for the shoulder injury, but that's for a different thread).

    Wouldn't the pain killers mask the symptoms? I'm usually hesitant to add pain killers in my feeds.
  • malinakamalinaka Seattle, WACharter Member
    JenA said:

    I think fructose is supposed to cause GI distress when consumed in large quantities.

    The last time I researched all of this, I came up with the idea that absorption rates have to do with concentration (molality). It all boils down to this: if your GI sees a very low concentration, it will absorb the compounds quickly, otherwise, it will decrease the concentration by adding water. In the case of fructose, you're loading up on small molecules which result in a high molality. Switching to a complex carb like maltodextrin (essentially a long chain of glucose) allows faster absorption and you'll end up with roughly the same energy yield at the end. The GI distress is caused by your body diluting the concentrated mixture with water.

    In conclusion: I stick with maltodextrin and away from simple sugars.

    I don't wear a wetsuit; it gives the ocean a sporting chance.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    edited September 2013
    @heart, et al: how do you all measure how much liquid meds you take? For Swim the Suck last year I put a full 'serving' of Kid's ibuprofen (I think 30ml) in a 12oz bottle of water mixed with crystal lite. I drank thru that at 2 feeds (I think 2:00 and 2:30 feeds).
    But I was worried of preparing a 2nd bottle. How much can one take? With loss from spillage and time going by, lack of solid food in belly, etc.
    I'll tell you tho, I did need that ibuprofen during StS!
  • malinakamalinaka Seattle, WACharter Member
    Does anyone have any experience altering their feeds to account for cold water? What are easy ways to add some fat and protein to a water bottle that don't involve steak and a blender? I've heard whale blubber is a great way to heat up fast, but try finding that on Amazon...
    I don't wear a wetsuit; it gives the ocean a sporting chance.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    @malinaka, AK Air flights 101 (SEA to ANC) and 152 (ANC to OME), get off the plane, buy whale blubber, then return. ;)
  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsMember
    http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov/protectedresources/buying.htm

    I am not an Alaska Native; can I buy some muktuk to eat?

    Maybe. It is unlawful to sell or purchase edible portions of Cook Inlet beluga whales, and it is unlawful to sell meat and edible products of bowhead whales taken in an aboriginal subsistence hunt. Otherwise, edible portions of threatened or endangered species may only be sold by Alaska Natives in Native towns or villages for Native consumption. Additionally, edible portions of marine mammals (other than Cook Inlet beluga whales, bowhead whales, and other threatened and endangered species) may be sold either A) for Native consumption or B) to non Natives if sold in Native towns and villages in Alaska (Native villages include Anchorage, Fairbanks, and Juneau). Once purchased, these products do not have to be consumed in the Native village or town.

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • I like feeding every 30 minutes as well. I mix 300 cals of Malto and cytomax (50% each) and add in 70 mg of caffeine to 24 oz. of water. Half the bottle every 30 minutes and a piece of granola bar on the hour. My purple (on request only) "pain" bottle gets 200 mg of ibuprofen as a little extra.
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember

    My Fellow Sharko et al,

    I have been using whey protein powder with my Malto and Cyto for a long time and it has worked well and is easier on the stomach....I have heard that flax seed oil is a good fat to add...I have been drinking it in the morning with my steel cut oats before a big swim....I am thinking I will add to the carbo/whey protein drink and report back....I am a big believer in a large bowl of warm steel cut oats about 1 1/2 hours before the swim as it relases heat and energy early on in the swim...
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    I feed every 30 minutes. Also when I swim
  • Thanks everyone for their input. Do you ever heat up your liquids? I am trying to get into this sport, obviously have never done a channel swim, but I used Generation Ucan every 30 minutes with 8 oz of water for the SCAR swim (think it ended up being 195 calories/hour took in). Used the raspberry the entire time and suprisingly did not get sick of it, but tomorrow could be a different story.
  • In a recent 6 hour I made up 2x feed, and asked my support to dilute to 1x from a thermos of hot water immediately before drinking. Worked pretty well, but you have to test to make sure it isn't TOO hot before passing to the swimmerl. The warming effect is probably only minimal (300 g fluid in a 100 kg body), and it was 18C in the water, so not cold, but it was nice psychologically.....
  • I have simplified my feeds over time. I now feed every 30 minutes. Liquids only. maltodextrin flavored with a little apple juice. 450 calories/hour (it's a lot, but my system can handle it without any distress). 800mg of ibuprofen when the muscle pain starts slowing me down (usually around 5 or 6 hours in).

    I buy the cheapest bulk maltodextrin that will go into solution quickly.
  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf San FranciscoMember
    I use 1 packet of Gu Roctane powder in 21 oz bottles (240 calories per packet), start feeding after the first hour (I like to get into my "groove" before taking a break) and then every 30 minutes thereafter.

    Roctane has a moderate amount of electrolytes in it so in a salt water swim after 5 hours or so I will occasionally do straight water and a regular gu or something else solid like a banana. I really like using Roctane since it makes the mixing really simple (no need to add anything but water) but suspect that for swims over 10 hours I might need to look at something with a lower electrolyte content.

    I tried using kids ibuprofen on a couple of swims but not sure it helps that much. I now tend to use shoulder pain as an incentive to concentrate on proper technique.
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • @IronMike, that's a great question. I just go with the dosage on the package. I use infant Advil and add the dosage for adults (I think it was something in the vicinity of 2-3 teaspoons per 4 feeds or so, but am not sure.)

    @timsroot, that's certainly a concern. But Advil is not just a pain masker, but also an anti-inflammatory. And so, it actually works to calm an inflammation if one occurs.

    I remember reading in the USMS magazine something about someone who took in too much NSAID and ended up almost dying from renal failure. The key is probably to stick to the recommended dosage. And, I hope that with the tweak to my breath and head angle, some of the shoulder peril will go away on its own.
  • ssthomasssthomas Charter Member
    edited September 2013
    @heart and @timsroot: Advil really is a good anti-infammatory. You can take quite a lot and be ok. I take about 50 mg every 1.5 hours, sometimes 100 mg if I'm in pain. I did the math with my doctor before Tahoe and we realized I could take 100 mg most of the way and still be fine. I think the daily limit is around 1800 mg, if I'm remembering correctly. I prefer a constant, slow drip to stay on top of the pain... seems to work better than waiting for pain and taking a larger dose. (For the record, I didn't take even close to 100 mg every 1.5 hours.)
  • i keep it very simple...

    I weigh 90kg so i need between 80 and 90 grams of carbs per hour to maintain good levels of energy over a decent swim (more than 3 hours).

    I have a sensitive stomach to gels so i have been testing natural foods, in particular potato. My formula...I blend one cooked medium potato with the skin on (45 grams of carbs) into a puree, add a pinch of ginger powder and 160ml of water. This makes a perfect 300ml drink that i can pop down in 10 seconds every 30 minutes. Tip - don't freeze the puree as it coagulates.

    I have been testing this for a while now with zero stomach issues and it seems to work.

    As for drinking...750ml per hour for normal days or 1L on hot and or windy days. If i am in an event where i am eating then the food already has 160ml of water added so the remainder (400ml) is sports drink. Toward the end of the race i also have some flat coke...yep sound terrible but as the body starts using its own fat reserves the caffeine assists this process. Plus the sugar is a nice treat.

    Don't forget a treating yourself every other hour (you deserve it)...
  • Mine is still a work in progress. My longest race is a 10K and my longest training swim is 10 miles (currents and 60 degrees), so it has been developed by those experiences to come up with my first official plan that I'll use for Charleston (12 miles, downstream). A little nervous that something will go wrong with it, but I've never had trouble at any long workouts. Here's what I have so far:

    Grits, peanut butter toast, and a banana 2 hrs before.

    1/2 orange gatorade and 1/2 water every 30 minutes
    Kona Punch gel every 60 minutes
    full gatorade, cold water, and "breathe easy" warm tea available PRN
    Oatmeal cookie or Clif bar PRN
    Albuterol @ 1 hr before race and @ 3 hrs into race (prevention)

    Everyone I swim with likes Maxim but when I tried it last winter, it didn't sit well on my stomach. I've used half gatorade/half water for so many vomit-inducing workouts in college and it always makes me feel good and settles my stomach, so it has crossed over to open water nicely.
    I have severe asthma, so my entire swimming career has been careful planning for my lungs, as well. Gotta include that in my feed plan too.
    I'm also allergic to quite a few foods, including dairy..which is in a lot of prepared bars, etc. It's not that I love Clif bars, but I can eat them and they work.
  • cynswimscynswims Member
    edited October 2013
    Thanks everyone for sharing your feed details!

    My longest swims have been 6h in Lake Tahoe (water temp 65-66 deg F). I start with my regular breakfast and a couple ibuprofen tablets beforehand. During the swim I alternated Heed and Perpetuum every 30min, including a dose of liquid ibuprofen ~5 hrs after my first morning dose on land. The powdered drink mixes were mixed with warm water on the boat (thanks, terrific crew!), 1 scoop powder to about 12 oz water. I had a gel (Gu or Hammer, and I try to avoid those that have significant caffeine) each hour. I am 5'3" ~120-125#.

    I fed from a large bike bottle on a rope with bright pink floats attached to my motor escort. I seem to be blessed with windy days on that lake. Feeding on a bottle on a rope is tricky in a winds that exceeded 20+mph for some of the swim. I was either getting dragged by the boat if I was upwind from it or I was frighteningly close to it if I was downwind.

    Coach's notes say I only got down 2-3 oz on a couple feeds in rough conditions, more typically I got 5-6oz. One says I got 12oz during a long stop but I am skeptical of that. I felt I was a little behind on hydration on the swim I am describing (Though there is a theory that I drank some of the lake too!) I try to balance drinking as much as I can comfortably with keeping feeds short.

    How do people feel after a swim? I wanted salt and was vaguely queasy and sugared-out after each of my 6h freshwater swims so I may try to mix in some broth feeds. I don't care for the idea of taking solid food (though in fresh water it might be okay). I haven't felt queasy while swimming, at least.

    Since I haven't done really long swims most of my training swims are 10K or shorter. I used the same formula for a 10K race (but no warm water at the feed station :) and it seems perfect for that.

    I plan to do a Tahoe length crossing in 2014. Looking forward to getting more practice and learning more here.
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