Since I have two major events coming up this year that will require me to train, I thought I would share what I've learned over the past two years training for marathons/ultras.
1. I will put on 5-7 lbs during training. There is no way around it. It's the combination of increased exercise= increased appetite and increased exercise= increased water retention from sore muscles and glycogen stores.
2. My digestive system will get very backed up...and I mean BACKED up. Holy crap! (literally!) It's pretty annoying to be ingesting extra fiber to get things moving and nothing happens except your stomach getting more and more bloated. Try running an 18 mile training run like that? Not fun!
3. Salt will make me retain more fluid and my body (once deep into training) will hold onto every little salt molecule that enters it. My face even gets bloated.
4. I will hate running for many months after I'm done with my marathon.
5. It's hard to mentally and physically adjust to normal work outs after training for 6 months. I kept thinking, "That was not a hard enough work out".
6. My digestive system will return to normal about 2 months after the marathon...and with a vengeance.
7. The 5-7 pounds gained come off on their own after about 2 months (once your body realizes it doesn't need to store everything.)
I'm going to start training for the Rothrock in March. I really hope we get an early spring!