First and foremost — you’d never want to run on a full belly. However, it’s important to have the energy required to get you through your run.
A small meal an hour or two before your run is ideal. Keep the portions to snack size if you’re expecting to go for a run. Stick to high carb and low fiber foods, and avoid spicy foods and those that are high in fat and acidity. Trust us, you wouldn’t want heartburn or indigestion creeping up mid-run while you’re pounding the pavement.
Stick with foods that are easy to digest but are packed with nutritional value and energy. Don’t over complicate the food you eat before a run and stay with simple, clean combinations using only a few ingredients.
Here are a few of our suggestions:
Banana with Nut Butter
Bananas have low acidity and are easily digestible. They are packed with nutrients, like potassium and manganese, which aid in combating muscle exhaustion. Nut butters like peanut, cashew, and almond are all delicious options that taste great with banana. Nut butters supply a dose of protein and caloric density necessary to keep you fueled up.
Hummus and Carrots
Hummus can certainly be store bought but is also easy to make at home. Mash chickpeas with a little olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and ta-da! It provides a healthy source of good fats, which help absorb the nutrients of fruits and vegetables. Carrots make perfect dipping sticks for hummus and are a good source of beta-carotene, vitamin K, and potassium. Carrots also have a higher amount of carbs than some other vegetables making it a good choice pre-workout or run.
Cottage Cheese With Berries
Cottage cheese provides calcium, potassium, and vitamin D. Try to stick with a low-fat cottage cheese. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and cherries are all great side additions, as well as ripe, juicy peaches. Not only do these fruits provide healthy carbs, they’re also full of fiber, folate, antioxidants, and potassium.
Turkey or grilled chicken wrap with mashed avocado is the perfect recipe for a boost of protein and energy. For a vegetarian option, you can also make a wrap with sliced cheese and arugula salad dressed in olive oil and sesame seeds.
Sweet Potato Slices
Cut long slices of sweet potato coated in olive oil, salt, and pepper. Throw them into the oven or even microwave if you’re short on time. Sweet potatoes are high in carbs and vitamin A, ideal as a pre-run snack. These slices also make a perfect base for a light and creamy cheese, like feta. Top it off with some herbs high in calcium like parsley. If you have a sweet tooth, you can also try to add peanut butter or a little bit of honey.