This will be the first in a series of blog posts to start you thinking and honing in on your nutrition as you get deeper into your training program.
Last week before the Sunday run we touched on the subject of fuelling your runs with Carbs vs Fat. The most recent Academy of Lions podcast goes into a bit more detail on this and there are a growing number of endurance athletes challenging conventional wisdom in this area with (for the most part) good success. If you're interested in entertaining this in time for the Goodlife Marathon you'll need to start getting your head around it now or within the next few weeks in order to give your body time to switch over from glucose to fat burning during your runs.
For people who are perfectly happy to stick with what you know (and let me stress that there is nothing wrong with that): If you are training for longer distances: how you fuel your runs and then refuel post run becomes more important as you demand more from your body with less time to recover between workouts. A good rule of thumb is to try and get a decent meal in at least 2 hours before your run and then follow up the run with a protein shake or small meal with a roughly 3 or 4:1 carb to protein ratio - for example a bowl of 1 cup of rice, sweet potato and 4 ounces of fish or chicken works or for vegetarians replace the animal protein with some beans and/or an egg. For most people shakes are the easiest to get down post workout and they take the least amount of prep so this may be your best option. If you run in a fasted state first thing in the am - this is not a problem if you know that you can get away with it (incidentally this may indicate that your body may already be good at accessing your fat stores for fuel) that’s perfect - if however, you find yourself struggling to finish your run and hitting the wall more often than you care to admit then you may need to fit a quick shake in before you hit the road. Shakes are easier for your body to digest so with a smaller window of time they are often the best option.
For those of us training for the shorter distances - the 5K or 10K - assuming that you have a good diet to begin with you should not need to make too many changes to your daily intake to keep yourself happy and well fuelled. Make sure you are well hydrated pre and post run and that you follow up that run with a small well balanced snack - 1/2 a shake or a hard boiled egg with some sweet potato or a bit of rice should do the trick.
For more in-depth questions you may please feel free to come chat at any of the runs or email me, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Nutrition Nat