Proper nutrition is vital for a healthy life. Proper nutrition becomes a survival issue for runners though. In order to optimize your running experience, especially if you are training for a race, it is highly essential to oversee your dietary habits. The time before a run or a race is crucial, and so it is a must that factors such as what is being eaten, when it is being eaten, whether what is being eaten is being eaten at the right time, are all important factors to consider when we talk about what foods to eat before running.
Here are some nutritional needs you may have to fulfill when eating before running, to make sure your energy supply does not diminish and deteriorate half way into a run!
We all know carbohydrates are the best kind of fuel for the body when it comes to exercises. Eating before running requires the need for carbohydrates to be filled on a priority basis as carbs get stored in the skeletal muscles in the form of glycogen and act as the constant energy provider throughout a workout. Foods to eat before running which are high in carbs include whole grains, fruits and veggies.
It is advisable to steer clear from sugar enriched foods such a candies, sodas etc. as these nutrition sources while providing carbs, will also give you a temporary upsurge in energy which will be later accompanied by a crash in blood sugar, resulting in impairment of the performance.
Foods to eat before running ranking high in carbohydrates can be consumed in fun ways too! Try fresh yoghurt sprinkled with chunks of fresh fruit for breakfast, a toast smeared with peanut butter or a cream cheese bagel for lunch and a whole wheat pasta meal with some grilled chicken and a side of boiled vegetables for dinner and you have a meal plan fit for a king!
Some of the body’s basic functioning for sustenance comes from fat. However, it is important to remember that too much of fat consumption can actually impair performance rather than add to it as digestion of fats requires a substantial load of energy. Some food options of foods to eat before running which can provide for moderate amounts of sufficient fat are flax seeds, olive oil and salmon.
Proteins are one of the nutrition essentials for a workout as they are responsible for the repairing of any wear and tear of muscles caused due to exercising. Hence when it comes to eating before running, proteins should be on top of the list. There is however a slight misconception about the role protein has to play in facilitating performance. It is thought that to optimize performance, proteins are rather more essential than carbs, which is wrong as carbs are easier and quicker to digest than proteins! Some of the best sources of proteins include lean meat, beans, lentils and non-fat dairy products!
Water may not exactly qualify as food but it is nonetheless one of the essential rituals to follow pre-running time! Water is very important to restore the amount of fluid that leaves the body through sweat during a run. Furthermore, water also cleans the body of metabolic waste products, the likes of lactic acid, which are produced during a workout, especially a run. It is said that 16 ounces of water consumed at least 2 hours before a run should suffice. If you are looking to run for more than a 60 minute span then it is always better to carry a water bottle with you.