Proper Nutrition: Before, During, and After your Runs

A special thank you to David Wiss of Nutrition in Recovery for his presentation this morning.  This article will be the first of several which will highlight parts of his presentation, for those who were unable to attend, as well as for those who’d like to review the wealth of valuable information which was presented.  In this week’s Coaches Corner, I’ll focus on nutrition immediately before, during, and after the workouts.

Before:  Aim for a breakfast of about 70 grams of carbohydrates, eaten an hour before your planned start time.  Fat and fiber tend to slow digestion, so while those are an important part of an overall healthy diet, neither is helpful immediately before a workout.  Before a workout, choose low fiber, low fat carbs such as potatoes or oatmeal.  Also, if you are going to have coffee, drink it after you’ve had a meal, and drink at least as much water as coffee.

During:  After the first hour, start hydrating and replacing electrolytes every 15-20 minutes.  Sports drinks, or water and GU are options.

After:  When you finish your run, try to get some fluids, low fiber/ low fat carbohydrates and protein into you as quickly as possible so your body can start rebuilding.  Immediately replenishing your glycogen stores will also help your body learn to store more glycogen, providing you with the extra energy you’ll need for your longer distances.

And most importantly, remember that there is no “one size fits all” diet.  These are general guidelines.  Please experiment with different foods and different quantities, within these guidelines, until you find what works best for you.


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