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Old 08-06-2010, 05:58 AM   #5
Darryl Shaw
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 707

Originally Posted by Randy Gurley View Post
I'm training for a marathon in November, and just got Daniels Running Formula. Since reading it, I've been doing some threshold training a few times a week to improve endurance, and some days of long distance running. Will both forms of running use muscle as fuel regardless of around workout nutrition?
Short high intensity workouts do not generally use protein as significant source of fuel unless your total energy and/or carbohydrate intake is inadequate. The protein requirements of endurance athletes are increased slightly though because protein can provide up to ~10% of energy during endurance training/races as it's used as fuel once glycogen stores are depleted. The recommended protein intake for elite endurance athletes therefore is 1.5-1.8g/kg/d but as most Western diets that are adequate in calories provide more than this amount without the use of supplements it isn't something you should be too concerned with. It's also worth bearing in mind that the use of protein as fuel can be avoided or at least minimized to some degree if [a] adequate calories are consumed, [b] a high carbohydrate diet (6-10gCHO/kg/d) is habitually consumed to ensure that glycogen stores are topped up and [c] carbohydrates are consumed during training sessions and races that last longer than an hour.

Will BCAA's really help minimize muscle loss? Sorry for a common question, I'd like to know the truth and it looks like people on here seem to know what they're talking about. Thanks.
No, calories, carbohydrates and strength training are what you need to prevent muscle loss and according to this paper (link) "the BCAA content of food proteins is about 15% of the total amino acid content" so a normal diet provides all you need and supplements are of no real benefit.
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