Running better: the runner’s diet
Whether you are a beginner, a casual runner or a marathon runner, it is essential to provide your body with the right fuel for optimal running performance. Therefore, we have compiled a short guide to sports nutrition for you so that you know what to eat before, during and after running.
What to eat here…
…Before the game
Good sports nutrition has a very positive effect on performance before running, but it also reduces speed. Before running, avoid eating foods high in fiber and fat because they are difficult to digest and stick to your stomach. Wait at least 3 hours after eating (with carbohydrates and protein) before starting. However, you can eat a small amount of low-fiber, high-carbohydrate snacks 30 to 60 minutes before running. Your body usually needs to consume 30 to 60 grams of carbohydrates per hour within 60 minutes and moderate intensity within 90 minutes. Therefore, don’t forget to replenish your glycogen reserves.
Some examples of pre-match snacks (about 50 grams of carbohydrates):
- Two bananas
- Two slices of toast with honey or jam
- Two low-fiber granola bars
- 75 grams of dried fruit (for example, apricots)
In addition, please make sure not to eat new food before running to avoid accidents! Also, make sure to drink enough water. In most cases, water will meet your needs, but you can also add high-quality sports drinks to supplement the water. Please note that if you do not drink enough alcohol before or during exercise, it will affect your running performance.
In the game
In order to avoid dehydration and fatigue, it is necessary to rehydrate during the long journey (more than an hour). A study by the University of Connecticut confirmed that even a small amount of water loss (less than 2% weight loss) can significantly affect endurance and cause dehydration.
Are you going to run more than 10 miles? Then add 600 to 1000 milliliters of water and/or drink electrolyte-rich beverages every hour.
Also, make sure your glycogen storage area is full of carbohydrates (30-60 hours). Prepare well and always take energy gels or carbohydrate-rich drinks.
Prepare your own sports drink:
- For moderate-intensity running training (less than one hour): 80ml multivitamin syrup + 920ml water + a pinch of salt
- For intensive running training (more than one hour): 70ml fruit syrup + 930ml mineral water (non-carbonated) + 20g maltodextrin + a little salt
- For very strenuous exercise (more than 1h30): 400ml fruit whey + 600ml water + a pinch of salt
After the game
After running for about an hour, please charge the battery with a small cup of complex carbohydrates and protein (ratio 3:1) after running. This will help you replenish glycogen storage and facilitate the recovery process. However, please be careful not to eat too much: it may cause stomach pain.
Some snacks after exercise:
- Shake the mango and chia seeds
- A bowl of cereals, milk and dried fruits
- Vegetable omelette on a slice of whole wheat bread