Food For A Marathon Runner
This weekend, over 40,000 runners will take on the London Marathon. Months of preparation will have gone into the big day, and for some, it will be a lifetime achievement. Our friends at Get The Gloss have put together a great article on what to expect, stating, that you might lose 2cm in height and 2.5kg of weight in water, while some may have to tend to a rather beaten toenail or two (full article here from Get The Gloss). But, we are here to help you get one of the most important things right over the next couple of days - your food and your fuel.
1. Carbohydrates: You have all heard of carb loading before a big run, but this does not mean just filling up on a big bowl of pasta the night before the race. You should be increasing your carbohydrate intake now by about 10%. The reason for this, is so that you can start to allow your body to store excess glycogen (excess glucose, which is the bi-product of carbohydrates) in the liver, and muscles, meaning more fuel for the big day. Don't, however, head for the doughnuts and crisps please! - here are three great, nourishing dishes to try, in order to up the carb intake the alkaline way:
2. Breakfast on the day: Don't veer off the track and start eating unfamiliar foods, before the big day. Stick with what you know to avoid gas, bloating and anything that might not sit so well in the stomach. On the morning of the race, keep your breakfast really simple - don't try anything too new, but make sure that you are having something that is high energy like my Avocado & Pomegranate Bircher.
3. Keeping your energy levels up during the run: Experts say that you should be consuming around 100 calories every 20 minutes. Try to avoid those horrid gels if you can. They are packed with all sorts of nasties. Try making a smoothie to carry with you made with banana, coconut water and almond butter.
4. STAY HYDRATED: Runners are going to lose a lot of water during a marathon, but it is important to monitor your hydration from 3-4 days before the race. Your pee should be the colour of light straw - if it looks dark, drink some more.
5. Recovery: Electrolytes are going to be severely depleted after a marathon. Make sure you have some salty snacks to munch on when you finish. Try having some Beetroot & Walnut Dip at the end with an added pinch or two of salt, & even bake up a batch of Protein Cookies to take with you. Drink lots of coconut water, which is full of potassium, and is one of the best drinks, to replenish your electrolyte levels. Have a proper meal as soon as you feel you can - get your friends and family to make you lots of healthy cakes, and enjoy a time when eating lots is key! Include lots of nuts and pulses, for added protein, and finish the day with a magnesium bath to offer some respite to those tired muscles.
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