Running has become the sport of choice for millions of people. It is not surprising considering that anyone can do it with just a pair of running shoes, a tracksuit and a desire to get in shape. But do you know how important it is to eat right for running? Even for beginners. Here we want to talk to you about it.
Basic aspects of a runner’s diet
Running is an endurance sport. Therefore, the primary objective of your diet should be to replenish your body’s energy reserves before setting off, but also to avoid dehydration during the run and to take as little time as possible to recover from the effort.
A beginner can consume approximately 500 kcal per hour of training. This amount rises significantly when the level is increased and more intensive practices are performed. Above all, if they include a series. In any case, this figure is quite high.
In the runner’s diet, the following are the protagonists.
In a proportion of 55-60% of the total diet. Keep in mind that these macronutrients, also called sugars, are the ones that provide the energy that the runner needs to overcome their workouts and tests.
fundamental for recovering from physical exertion after training or racing and for building new muscle fibers. Runners are advised to take 2 grams per day for every kilogram of weight they have.
Saturated fatty acids should be totally out of your diet. Regarding the unsaturated ones, which are healthy, we must say that they can be present, but never in a proportion higher than 5-10% of the total. The lighter you are and feel, the easier it will be to run.
As explained in this wellbeing article, food influences mood. Following these dietary guidelines will make you feel better during your run and therefore make it easier for you to achieve your goals, which translates into feeling better about yourself.
Dietary tips to prepare for a demanding race or training session
If you have just started running, the only thing you should keep in mind is that the last meal before training or race should be eaten at least 3 hours before the start of the race. That is the time your body will need to digest the food and transform it into the energy you need for exercise. In addition, you will avoid suffering from flatulence and feeling heavy during the walk.
If you need it, you can always have a snack half an hour before training. It is best to opt for natural nuts such as, for example, peanuts or walnuts. However, they should not be fried or processed.
On the other hand, if you are about to run a race of up to 10 kilometers, you don’t have to worry about anything else except hydration. Normally, your body will not need any additional energy, but it will need water during the race.
Things change if we are talking about the half marathon (21,097 meters) and, above all, the marathon (42,192 meters). In these cases, you will need to provide your body with energy and mineral salts during the walk so as not to run out of energy and avoid ‘the wall’ that prevents you from continuing.
In short, whether you are just starting to run or you have been enjoying this simple but addictive sport for years, take care of your diet. This is the only way to feel good and get the most out of each race and training session.