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At the beginning of August Ultra Runner Donnie Campbell began his attempt to climb all 282 Munros and travel between them, self propelled. Just over 31 days later Donnie finished on the most northerly Munro, Ben Hope, breaking the previous record of 39 days!
Active Root were privileged to support Donnie during his attempt, where he drank over 200 litres of our Original Ginger Sports Drink.
Below Donnie answers our questions on how he managed his nutrition during the grueling month long adventure!
Did you have a specific nutrition plan for the 31 days, for example were you monitoring how many calories you took on per day?
I had no specific nutritional plan for the Munro Round apart from trying to get a minimum of 90g of carbohydrates every hour when I was moving. The reason for this was recent studies show that you can absorb up to 120g when running however I found 120g an hour was leaving me nauseous when I tried it so found I could tolerate 90g of carbohydrates an hour. Also, the studies suggested that the higher the carbohydrate intake while running reduces muscle breakdown and this was going to be vital for me to keep doing 12-14 hours days consecutively.
How did Active Root fit into your nutrition?
Because I was having to take on large quantities of carbohydrates and fluids every day, Active Root was vital as it was kind of killing two birds with one stone! It was keeping me hydrated as well as giving me 40g of carbohydrates for 500ml. I have been using Active Root for years and find that because they don’t use maltodextrin and it has ginger root extract then it does not give me GI distress/issues like other carb drinks I have tried. I can drink gallons of the stuff without also getting sweet taste fatigue as it is not very sweet even though its main ingredient is raw cane sugar.
What did an average day’s nutrition look like?
I was mainly getting my 90g of Carbohydrates from Active Root carb drink, cliff bars, trek bars and shot blocks and if I was getting back to the support vehicle during the day then I would also have some Salt & Vinegar crisps and plant-based sausage or egg rolls.
At the end of the day it was basically just an eating competition, when I finished for the day, I would immediately take a Science in Sport Rego Recovery Drink and a snack of some sort crisps, cake, biscuit etc just whatever I felt like or a combination of all! Then evening meals were mainly pasta, lentil Bolognese, beyond meat burgers or pizza when we were close to a pizzeria.
Breakfast was four slices of whole meal toast with Almond Butter, Blueberry Jam, 2 cups of tea and a can of Red Bull!
Did your weight change throughout the 31 days?
Yeah, I lost some weight, but I can’t tell you how much as I did not weigh myself at the start. It was inevitable I would lose some weight during the Munro Round as I knew there would be no way I could consume enough calories mainly carbohydrates to match my calorie expenditure.
Would you change any way in which you fuelled/hydrated yourself?
No as I was successful and was actually finished a day ahead of my schedule and I did not even have one vomit for the whole month of running up and down Munros!