This is a list of the food which was available at the refreshment tables for the Comrades Marathon last year – I have yet to hear back from the Comrades Association confirming any additions to this list, however I’m pretty sure it will stay more or less the same.
48 Refreshment tables, roughly 2- 3km apart are stocked with the following:
- Water sachets
- Powerade sachets (non-carbonated energy drink)
- Coke and Cream Soda (green, sweet carbonated drink) poured into plastic bottles
- Bananas cut into chunks – they leave the skin on so I usually grab an end piece and just squish it into my mouth without fiddling with the skin.
- Oranges cut into segments – also still with the skin on but I usually just suck the juice out and ditch the rest
- Energy sachets (I never get to see these because I’m too far at the back 🙂
- Chocolates – Bar One which is a South African brand of chocolate
- Baby Potatoes – boiled and sprinkled with salt, only available at every second table from the half-way mark
- Biscuits – these are the equivalent to cookies in the USA
There are also spectators who stand on the side of the road handing out food which they have prepared. Salt is readily available, just make sure that if you hold out your hand for some, you have enough water to wash it down with, I saw a guy try and dry swallow a handful of salt and felt so sorry for him based on his facial expression that I donated the extra water I had taken, to him…
What my mom and I have done in the past is have our trusty second (better known as my dad) meet us at strategic spots along the route with food which we like to have on a long run. I usually stock him with GU’s (this is my energy gel stuff of choice), jelly babies and cooked sweet potato with butter. My mom likes cooked chicken and some people give my dad sandwiches and even eggs.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to eat at EVERY opportunity!! I try and get something down my throat at each table I get to. If you start feeling nauseas it is almost too late and the only way to stave it off is to eat – so be very aware of what your body is telling you. If you start feeling sick then force something down your throat, jelly babies do very well because they are small and palatable. Just water or energy drinks are not enough!!
There are other things available along the route too which I’ll write about in my next post…