Up to 10% of your running energy can be consumed by your brain. That is according to a report I have just read by Charles Pedlar, endurance physiologist with the English Institute of Sports.
During running every runner indulges in many thoughts. Sizing up the competition, your dreams and fears, your mile by mile strategy on a mental loop these can be energy sapping as running itself.
Its worth noting that most of this energy is used up at the pre start when runners are anxious.
“Your heart beats faster, and your brain, being a hugely inefficient and sizable organ, can use up to 10% of your stored glycogen energy reserves before you have even begun” adds the report.
The elite athletes try to cope with this pre race anxiety by taking time from the crowds to keep calm and maintain their pulse at no more than 10 beats over the resting heart rate.
So, save your energy by not thinking too much!