When I was on my way to the start of the marathon the other weekend I was horrified to see about a dozen marathon runners in the queue at the burger van.
It makes my stomach churn just thinking about it to be honest. I really can’t think of anything much worse than eating a big greasy burger before running 42km. Yuk!
So what is the best fuel for running?
If you have done a marathon before you will have noticed that most organisers will invite you to a pasta party the night before. Pasta is a great thing to eat the night before the marathon but as I can’t eat wheat, mine is always the free from version, which I have at home as you won’t find that at a pre-run event.
On the morning of a race I have never been able to eat or drink much. I hate the feeling of running on a full tummy or equally running with the feeling of loads of fluid bouncing up and down.
It really is personal preference though as illustrated by the dozen runners at the burger stand that morning.
That said, my top tips for fueling your run are:
- The day before the race drink non fizzy drinks at regular intervals to boost hydration
- Eat pasta the night before
- Chew your food particularly well the day before to aid digestion
- The morning of the race avoid tea, coffee and hot chocolate
- Eat a banana when you are getting ready
- Take something like a Clif Bar with you and eat it on the way for slow release energy
- Sip water and an energy drink the morning of the race …don’t glug it down
You will see some people wearing a belt full of energy gels. I think this is a bit unessessary but again it is personal choice. Many marathons hand these out so having a couple at low points is normally enough. If you have a small pocket pop a few jelly babies in … you will be patting yourself on the back for that one as the day goes on.
Enjoy and run on!