People are often concerned about what they will eat on race morning or the morning of an important run.
If you feel energized during a run, it is not simply due to the oatmeal you ate that morning; eating properly throughout your ENTIRE training cycle will show during every workout.
When you eat complex carbohydrates like fruits, sprouted breads, starchy vegetables and whole grains during your training, you store up your glycogen. And when your body feels fatigued and has already burned off your morning breakfast, it will tap into that stored glycogen.
So it’s crucial that you make the effort to incorporate those healthy carbohydrates in order to avoid hitting the dreaded “wall.” White carbohydrates digest very quickly and will give you an immediate high but won’t offer much when it comes to storing glycogen.
So now you know to stay away from white and refined carbohydrates during training…and pretty much all the time! What to eat that morning? Keep it low fat and low protein. Both fat and protein take energy to digest and we want to save that energy for your run! Protein and fat can also leave you feeling heavy so you want something simple and easy to digest. I love creating portable foods for a pre-race breakfast. Portables also really come in handy during a busy week of training. And if you’re traveling, these treats are a no-brainer! I recommend my Maca Berry Muffins (see below). They provide you with the fuel you need to cross that finish line. I would also suggest spreading on a little nut butter if you are eating the muffin at least 90 minutes before a run to give yourself time to digest it.
Pre-run fuel recipes (photos left to right above):
- Maca Berry Muffins
- Trail Mix Cereal Breakfast Bar
- Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats
- Banana Matcha Oat Cookies – not pictured, bonus!
Post run most people grab what’s convenient and easy on their stomach, but what you eat after a workout can dramatically affect your overall fitness. Your muscles were just broken down and in need of repair, and you have a small window of opportunity to do so. Being sore is great but if you are constantly sore after working out it can be due to the fact you are either not replenishing within 30-60 minutes after a workout or simply not choosing the right things to eat. Smoothies are always a good option.
They are hydrating and provide all the essentials: vegetables, fruit, some healthy fats and protein. A complete meal all in one little shake! I also love smoothies because immediately post-run our appetites are suppressed and we may not want to eat. Drinking is much more doable. And if you are on the go, I recommend my homemade protein bars or granola bars! Make them ahead of time store them in your freezer to have all week long – another great portable option if your traveling. I always bring one with me in my recovery bag along with lots of water to replenish and hydrate!
Post-run fuel recipes (photos left to right above):
- Almond Coconut Protein Bars
- Mighty Green Hulk Smoothie