Pre-workout nutrition is a pressing issue among runners of all levels that never loses its relevance. This is because there is no universal way to replenish energy stores that works equally well for all athletes and does not cause adverse reactions or discomfort.
Nevertheless, there are general principles that can be used as a guide for your menu.
How long it takes to eat before a workout depends entirely on the complexity of the food and how quickly it can be absorbed. A plate of spaghetti and a chicken breast is different from a banana and toast and coffee. The time window when fuel loading is most optimal and does not bring unpleasant feelings, bloating of the stomach or heaviness during a run is different for everyone (from 30 minutes to 3 hours) and is found out by experience.
Do I even have to eat before running?
Contrary to common belief, most recreational running workouts do not require much change in diet. A normal normal diet can provide enough glycogen stored in the muscles for a 90-minute run at a good pace. That is, classic light running workouts of up to 1.5 hours 3 times a week do not require additional carbohydrate loading.
Things change when it comes to daily challenging runs with a dash of fartlek or interval training. An advanced runner’s level means an impressive caloric expenditure. So constant glycogen replenishment becomes essential, among other things, to minimize the risk of overtraining syndrome.
A runner weighing 70 kg burns about 600-700 calories per hour. Of course, it all depends on the pace, intensity, and many other conditions.
Morning runs and meals
Before the morning run, there may be a slight decrease in glycogen reserves in the muscles, but it is not so critical as to say that there is an urgent need to replenish them. However, it is desirable to hydrate the body a little, so a glass of clean water is a good solution in any case.
A long morning workout of more than 1 hour should already be provided with additional energy, extracted from a variety of light breakfast options. After breakfast, an appropriate (individual) amount of time should pass for digestion.
Согласуйте продукты с вашим желудком
Cool fuels for runners, such as bananas or oatmeal, can cause long-term discomfort, heartburn and similar things for some athletes. So don’t ravage your body with a variety of recommendations, no matter how helpful they may seem. Choose the foods to which your digestive system is most loyal.
The main requirement for the set of foods you eat before a run is, of course, the predominance of carbohydrates and easy digestion.
У любителей утреннего бега классическим вариантом перекуса (завтрака) являются тосты с разнообразными начинками: ореховое масло, мед и т. д. Перед длинными тренировками спросом пользуется овсянка с изюмом и другими сухофруктами.
For many athletes, chocolate, molasses-based pastries and yogurts with various fillers and carbohydrate inclusions such as rice balls work perfectly.
Some cyclical athletes eat an omelet before a run, but during this period the body is not as demanding of proteins and fats as it is of carbohydrates. Therefore, an omelet is a great post-workout meal, not a pre-workout meal.
The rest of the time, when the run is in the afternoon or evening, the undoubted leader is pasta (pasta) made exclusively of durum wheat with endless sauces. Rice should also not be forgotten.
Питание перед марафоном
From the body’s point of view, competitions are no different from an ordinary workout, except a little more intense and longer. Therefore, there may be no special changes in an amateur runner’s diet.
But performance runners prepare in advance by increasing their glycogen stores by switching to a high-carbohydrate diet a few days before the race. In other cases, it is enough to eat a plate of pasta in the evening and oatmeal with a couple of bananas in the morning before the start.
What not to eat
Dairy-based products are better left for the post-workout time, so oatmeal should ideally be cooked in water. For some people this may be unpalatable. Then you can turn a blind eye to this advice or add honey, jam, and other goodies to your porridge.
Spicy and spice-rich foods are not a good choice because of possible subsequent stomach problems. Excessively salty food will adsorb water, disrupting internal organs, clotting the blood and complicating oxygen transport, as well as approaching the threshold of dehydration.
In a variety of fashionable non-specialized fitness magazines, you can find advice that does not bring us anything good. For example, recommendations to eat mashed apples or dishes based on legumes, potatoes, eggplant, cabbage, mushrooms, radishes, and spinach before a run. None of these foods should be included in a pre-workout meal.
In general, the main principle is to keep fiber and fat to a minimum. Oats and peanut paste are partially included, but due to their nutritional value and other health benefits, they are made an exception.
The protein component may be present in the pre-start menu to increase the feeling of satiety in weight loss. But in general, it is better left for the recovery period.