It’s early in the morning (or somewhat early). You got yourself out of bed. Sneakers on. Ipod in hand. You are ready to run. You head out the door. But wait….. forgetting something?
YES! You need to eat!
Whether you’re a newbie to running, already an avid NYC street runner or training for this year’s NYC half in March, you still need to fuel up before you hit the pavement (or treadmill).
Think about it, you wouldn’t drive a car without any gas. And yes I know this is NYC and most of us don’t have cars, that is unless you are lucky enough to afford both NYC rent AND a parking space. So better example, no gas means no UBER ride!
Anyways, the same is with our bodies. Simply put, Food is Fuel.
So WHAT should I eat? Great Question and there’s a Great Answer. CARBS. CARBS. CARBS.
When it comes to running, carbohydrates are your friends. No Atkins diet here. Carbohydrates provide quick energy to power your muscles and prevent fatigue.
Pick carbohydrates that are easy to digest, meaning lower in fiber and fat. This will avoid unwanted stomach issues while running (think gas, bloating, diarrhea – not much fun).
If you’re heading out for a longer run, more than an hour, add a small amount of protein to help build and repair active muscle and prevent hunger later in the run.
Try These 6 great options
Easy to digest, carbohydrate-rich and portable. Bonus – bananas contain potassium to help prevent muscle cramps, especially good for heavy or salty sweaters.
Run great, look great AND eat bagels. For a shorter run stick to a mini bagel or half a regular-sized one. For a more intense, longer run, go for the whole damn bagel!
A great option if you don’t like eating solids before running. Blend low fat milk or yogurt with fresh or frozen fruit.
Naturally sweet, a great fruit for quick energy. 2 dates have the same amount of potassium as a banana.
This is not the time to break out the all bran, extra fiber cereal. Opt for cereals with less than 3-4 grams of fiber per serving. Add milk for additional protein.
6. Energy Bites
Join the energy bite craze. Pop in a few for a quick bite before your run. Save money and make your own. Check out 5 Ingredient Peanut Butter Energy Bites.
So to Summarize:
- Food is Fuel
- Eat BEFORE you Run (also hydrate, but that’s another topic. Stay tuned!)
- Say YES to → CARBS and maybe a small amount of protein
- Say NO to → high Fiber and high Fat