Preparing for a marathon can be a daunting task, and the last thing you want to do is sabotage your hard work by neglecting your nutrition. A well-fueled body can make all the difference in helping you achieve your marathon goals. In this blog post, we will explore some of the best fuelling tips to help you succeed in your next marathon.
Don’t skip breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially when it comes to fuelling for a marathon. Skipping breakfast can cause you to feel lethargic, light-headed and may even cause you to “hit the wall” during your marathon. A breakfast high in complex carbohydrates and protein will help provide the necessary energy and nutrients to fuel your body for the race ahead. For more tips on what to eat before a race click here.
Load up on carbs
Carbohydrates are a runner’s best friend, providing the necessary energy to sustain long runs. It’s essential to load up on carbs in the days leading up to the marathon, but not the night before. Eating a high-carb meal the night before can cause indigestion and discomfort. Instead, aim to eat complex carbs like brown rice, whole-grain pasta, or sweet potatoes a few days before the race.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Staying hydrated is crucial for your overall health and performance during a marathon. Drink water regularly, even if you don’t feel thirsty. It’s also essential to replenish electrolytes lost through sweat by drinking sports drinks or coconut water.
Don’t try anything new
Race day is not the time to try new foods or drinks that you’re not used to consuming. Stick to familiar foods and drinks that you’ve used during your training. This will prevent any potential digestive issues during the race and ensure your body is getting the fuel it needs.
Fuel during the race
Marathon runners should aim to consume between 30-60 grams of carbohydrates per hour of running. This can come in the form of gels, chews, or sports drinks. It’s important to practice fueling during your training runs to figure out what works best for you. Don’t wait until you feel hungry to consume fuel, start fueling early and often to maintain your energy levels.
Caffeine has been shown to enhance performance and reduce perceived exertion during endurance exercise. A small amount of caffeine before or during the race may help boost your performance. However, it’s important to note that caffeine can also cause dehydration, so be sure to balance it with plenty of water.
After the race, it’s crucial to replenish your body with the necessary nutrients it needs to recover. Eating a meal high in complex carbs and protein within 30 minutes of finishing the race will help repair muscle damage and restore glycogen levels. Additionally, continue to hydrate and replenish electrolytes lost through sweat.
In conclusion, proper fuelling is essential for marathon success. Don’t skip breakfast, load up on carbs, hydrate, stick to familiar foods, fuel during the race, consider caffeine, and recover properly. By following these tips, you’ll be well-fuelled to crush your marathon goals. Happy running!