Breaking Rules at Moab

publishedabout 1 month ago
1 min read

In the 1986 Eddie Murphy, The Golden Child, Murphy’s character has to go through this ancient obstacle course to get a sacred weapon. He’s told by the old Guru dude to “Stay on the Path.” Halfway through his journey to the weapon he deviates and the path he was supposed to be on bursts into flames. He said, “I thought you said I was supposed to stay on the path!!” The guru replied, “YES, but you must know when to break the rules!”

Before the Moab 240, I shared my fueling plan with you in the newsletter. I had everything ready to go in baggies and I just needed to execute the plan. Sometimes, the plan meets reality and we’ve got the change things up.

The race started at noon on Friday the 13th and I was ready to go! I was using Tailwind in my bottles as base nutrition and electrolytes for the race. I would see Jennifer at mile 16.75, refill all my bottles, and get equipped for a cold night in the desert. My fueling plan was working well so far.

By the time I saw Jennifer at the Indian Creek aid station at mile 67.82 I only wanted water to drink. I just could not take the sweetness or flavors of liquid nutrition anymore.

No Tailwind, no Long Haul, no SIS, just water.

I had to modify my plan. I decided I would get my electrolytes from salt tabs that I would take periodically with water. I would get my calories mainly from real food at aid stations (burgers, soup, mashed potatoes, etc.), Jennifer's homemade rice balls(sticky rice, spam, and eggs) wrapped in plastic wrap, rice crispy treats, Cliff bars, and Maurten Gels. Most of the time, I could be seen on the trail chowing down on rice balls with a smile on my face. At every aid station, I made sure to eat a lot of calories. My favorite was a cheeseburger with guacamole on it! So good! Every time I met Jennifer, I’d also down a Starbucks Frap.

That’s how I ran the rest of the race. I tried to keep the calories flowing. Even so, when I’d start to feel a dip in energy, I’d eat a rice ball or gel and keep moving.

Lesson - We have to know when to deviate from our plan. We have to know when it’s time to break the rules. I’m confident if I had kept on with the liquid nutrition, my stomach would have gone south and I’d have a repeat of 2020. Instead, I deviated and got it done with mostly real food!

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