Fueling for the Run

4 10 2015

foodAs runners, our diets are important not only for maintaining good health, but also to promote peak performance.  Proper nutrition and hydration can make or break a workout or race.  What we fuel our bodies with can significantly affect how we feel and perform. We’ve covered what to consume during your run to be able to get in the longer distances, but we also want to talk about pre- and post-run nutrition.

Pre-Run Nutrition

It is important that you have an eating plan prior to your training runs and races. Having a small meal or snack with adequate carbs will ensure your energy needs are met during your run. A few things to note:

  • Don’t start on an empty tank
  • Intake 75-100 grams of carbohydrate (300-400 calories) 1 ½ – 2 hours prior to exercise
  • If you miss the snack, try 25-30 grams carbohydrate (1 gel or 1 banana) plus 8 ounces of water 30 minutes prior to workout

Quick & Easy Pre-Workout Nutrition Ideas

  • 1 banana w/ 1.5 T. peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup reduced fat cottage cheese w/ 1 T. jelly, banana, & ½ cup strawberries
  • 1 package (2 bars) Nature’s Valley Granola Bar w/ 8 oz, skim milk
  • 1 cup reduced fat chocolate milk w/ 1 medium piece of fruit like an apple
  • 1 cup Wheaties Cereal w/ 1 cup 2% milk w/ banana
  • 1 whole wheat pita (4”) + ¼ cup hummus
  • 16 Animal Crackers w/ 8 oz. skim milk
  • 1/2 bagel w/ 1 T. peanut butter
  • 1 low fat yogurt + ¼ cup low fat granola
  • 1 hardboiled egg,1 slice 100% whole wheat toast w/ 1 T. Jelly
  • 1 low fat pudding cup & 3 T. peanuts

On the Go

  • 4 Fig Newtons w/ light string cheese
  • ¼ cup dry roasted peanuts w/ ¼ cup raisins
  • 1 Luna Bar w/ ½ cup grapefruit
  • 1 Quaker Oatmeal On the Go Bar w/ light string cheese
  • 1 piece 100% whole wheat bread, 1 T. jelly, 1 T. peanut butter
  • 4 dried apricots, ¼ cup Fiber One cereal & ¼ cup dry roasted peanuts

Be creative and use these as a guide to develop your own snacks.

Post Workout – Let the fun begin!

After a long workout, it is important to refuel your muscles for recovery. Take in both carbohydrates and protein. Ideally have this meal within 30-60 minutes of finishing your workout; this will enable the most glycogen to be stored.

Examples:

  • Bagel + 2 T. peanut butter
  • Clif Bar/Powerbar/Harvest Bar w/ 16oz. 1% milk
  • Peanut butter and jelly sandwich* w/ 1c. 1% milk
  • 2- 4” waffles (toasted) + 3 T. peanut butter + 1 T. jam
  • 2- 4” waffles (toasted) + ¼ c. light syrup & 1 c. low fat milk
  • 1 c. oatmeal w/ 1 c. low fat milk, 1 pear & ¼ c. trail mix
  • 1 fat free pudding cup, 1 bagel + 1 T. low fat cream cheese & 1 c. low fat milk
  • 1 baked potato + ¼ c. shredded cheese + 1 c. broccoli + 2 t. butter
  • 1 baked potato + ¼ c. shredded cheese w/ 1 c. low fat milk & ½ c. apple sauce
  • 1 c. mac & cheese w/ 1 banana & 1/2 c. Low fat milk
  • Grilled cheese w/ tomato soup, 1 c. Low fat milk & 1 orange
  • Egg sandwich* w/ 1 banana
  • 16 baby carrots + 2 T. light ranch w/ 1 pita bread + 2oz can chicken + 1 T light mayo
  • 2 hardboiled eggs w/ 1 slice toast + 2 T. jam + 1 orange + 1 banana + 1/2c. cottage cheese
  • 1 Low fat fruit yogurt w/ 1 banana & 8 oz. sports drink
  • 1 fruit smoothie* w/ 1 All Bran Bar, ½ c. cottage cheese
  • 1 Low fat fruit yogurt w/ 1 package (2 bars) Nature’s Valley Granola Bars
  • 1 Turkey sandwich* w/ 20oz. sports drink
  • Kashi Go-Lean Crunch + 1c. low fat milk w/ 20oz. sports drink
  • 1 pita bread + ¼ c. hummus/ refried beans w/ 1 banana & 1 stick string cheese
  • ¼ trail mix* w/ 1c. low fat milk
  • Tuna melt* on English muffin/toast w/ 1 apple

 Recipes

*PB&J:  2 slices whole wheat bread, 2T. peanut butter, 1T. 100% fruit jelly

*Egg Sandwich:  2 slices whole wheat, 1 slice cheese, 1 egg over easy

*Fruit Smoothie:  8oz low-fat plain yogurt, 1 banana, ½ c. frozen blueberries, ½ c. O.J.

*Turkey Sandwich:  2 slices whole wheat bread, 3oz (2-3 slices) turkey breast, 1T. mustard, 1 slice provolone cheese

*Trail Mix:  1c. peanuts, 1c. raisins,  ½ c. M&M’s, ½ c. sunflower seeds

*Tuna Melt:  3oz can chunk light tuna in water, 1T. light mayo, 1T relish, 1 slice cheddar


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