Anyone who goes running regularly knows how important it is to replenish their energy stores properly before exercise. Because only with the right “fuel” in your blood can you prepare your body for the intensive strain.
However, if you eat the wrong thing before you start your endurance training, you will quickly regret it: Your performance drops and digestive problems such as stomach aches and even diarrhoea can occur. Runners should therefore avoid certain foods directly before jogging. These five definitely belong to de n No Gos of runner’s food:
The optimal nutrition for endurance athletes
1. high-fibre foods
Actually, pulses, wholemeal products & Co. are a must-have in your daily diet, because the fibre they contain boosts the digestion and the complex carbs provide long-term energy. Actually … Because if you eat too much fibre-rich food right before running, these advantages are reversed into disadvantages. Because then they act more like “ballast” in the gastrointestinal tract and slow you down. The last meal before training should therefore be low in fibre.
2. fruit juices
Juice? No, thanks! Water is the best drink for runners © Jacob Lund / Shutterstock.com
As far as calorie content is concerned, juices can easily take on Coke & Co. But it is not the calories that are the real problem for runners, but the fruit sugar, also known as fructose. Our intestines have a hell of a time digesting large amounts of fructose – regardless of whether you suffer from fructose intolerance, for example. Too much fructose overloads even the most healthy intestines.
Our body is not really dependent on fructose and is first converted into glucose so that we can use it to produce energy.
Breathing correctly during sport
3. high-fat foods
With fat it is the same as with fibre: Whoever eats a very fatty meal shortly before the run will quickly regret it: fat is difficult to digest and has a long residence time in the stomach, i.e. the food lies like a block in your stomach when running. But do not forget: Even if fatty foods are taboo before training, you should not demonize fat in everyday life. Fat, just like protein and carbohydrates, belongs on your plate every day and should be an integral part of a balanced diet.
Spicy food often leads to heartburn
4. hot spices
Spicy food stimulates the metabolism properly and can even release happiness hormones. The problem: Spicy food also stimulates the stomach motor function and more gastric acid is produced. This is basically nothing bad, but if you go running directly after a bowl of chili con carne, you must expect heartburn, among other things, because the movement causes the gastric juice to flow back into the esophagus.
8 tips to get faster when running
Quickly available, easily digestible carbohydrates are ideal before running, because they do not burden the body and provide immediate energy. Toast or a light bread roll with a low-fat spread or honey are therefore a good choice. But you should avoid pure sweets, such as a chocolate bar, if possible, because they basically only provide empty calories without any added value for the body and let your blood sugar level go on a rollercoaster ride.
What should I eat before I run?
A small bowl of oatmeal before the run gives power
For your running success is not only important WAS They eat, but above all WANN You eat it. The last big meal should be eaten 2 to 3 hours before running, so that your gastrointestinal tract has enough time to digest it. Now it is time to stock up on healthy nutrients that will provide you with energy while running. These include above all carbohydrates, but also easily digestible protein.
Remember: The best way to get the most out of your gastrointestinal tract is to provide a low-fiber, low-fat, easily digestible meal.
2 to 3 hours before running eat last big meal
Carbohydrates are the main source of energy in our body and therefore particularly important for endurance athletes. In general, you should rely on slow carbohydrates, because they provide energy in the long term and keep your energy level constant. In other words: noodles, rice, bulgur, oatmeal, quinoa & co.
are therefore ideal runner foods, best in combination with high-quality proteins, such as wholemeal pasta or rice with chicken and vegetables or eggs (scrambled eggs/ fried egg/ omelette etc.) with rice and vegetables.
Book tip: The “Runner’s World running book for beginners”
eat a high-energy snack 30 minutes to 1 hour before the running session
Directly before the training session, however, the slow carbs are too heavy in the stomach, so you should focus on fast carbohydrates at this time. The body can use these quickly and immediately for energy production. 30 minutes to 1 hour before the training session you can eat small snacks that provide quick energy:
- 1 banana (pure or with a pinch of nutmeg)
- homemade smoothie
- Slice of toast with jam or honey
- Cottage cheese with fruit and honey
- a dish of applesauce
- Low-fibre muesli bars
- 1 portion of oatmeal
- a handful of dried fruit
Conclusion: If you want to get the best out of yourself and your body when jogging, you should not neglect nutrition. Because only the right food will ensure that you can run at full power and deliver the desired performance.