After running a Half Marathon you should first replace the fuel you used, and that’s mainly carbohydrates—that’s primarily what the body uses as its fuel source at an event like that. Most of us first reach for water at the finish line but we drunk enough water during the race.
I normally have a Chocolate bar and an energy drink in my bag, and the first thing I do after crossing the finish line is, pick up my bag, chew the Chocolate bar and drink the energy drink. These are not real carbohydrates but sources of energy that restores my energy levels before I move to the next stage of recovery.
Not all carbohydrates are equal. White Bread is a carbohydrate but it is low on nutrients. In fact, one piece of banana is better than eating half a loaf.
List of quality carbohydrates that should be in every runners diet.
- Whole Grain Cereal
- Whole Wheat Bread
- Brown Rice
- Sweet potatoes
Protein & Fat
The body also use fat and protein during a grueling half marathon. It is also a good Idea your post race meal to include some small amount of protein as well, and that’s going to help the body recover from that long duration work.
Some Quality Protein that every runner should eat
The rule of thumb is that the ratio of Carbohydrates to protein should be 4:1
Another awesome drink am planning to include in post race refueling drink is Flavored milks; many runners swear chocolate milk in particular is a great refueling source.
This is a running tip for a pre-race breakfast meal.
Eat your regular diet, make sure you are hydrating and eat something small that is carbohydrate-based with some protein before the race. Don’t run on an empty stomach. I have noticed every time I race on an empty stomach I get stomach upsets. But don’t have a buffet breakfast—you’ll end up paying for that.
Forget Gatorade sports drinks, the best sports drink to have after a running workout or hard race is chocolate milk, studies say.
In a University of Texas at Austin study, athletes who drank low-fat chocolate milk after a hard work out (as opposed to those who drank sports beverages with just carbohydrates) developed more muscle and less fat, as well as improved workout times. Another study published in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found cyclists who drank chocolate milk had twice the maximal oxygen uptake (the most amount of oxygen an individual can use during intense exercise, an indicator of your cardiovascular fitness) as those who drank calorie-free beverages or carbohydrate sports drinks.
So, in the 30-minute recovery window after running, have a nice cold drink of low-fat chocolate milk to boost your performance and overall physical shape.
They say the most important meal of the day is breakfast. This is even more important for cyclist who need plenty of energy to power their rides.
A breakfast for a cyclist should be a feast. A large breakfast raises liver glycogen stores and blood glucose levels.
Many experts recommend the meal to be eaten at least three hours before you go out for your morning ride. The three hour period is enough time to allow ingestion.
Breakfast food types for cyclist
Food type should be easy to digest foods. Breakfast meal can consist of mainly of energy giving foods, cereal, dairy or soy milk, juice, and toast with plenty of carbohydrate rich jam. For the days when a rider does his long runs and hills he may add in some protein from eggs and egg whites, protein powder, and even add in a large bowl of rice and pasta.
Breakfast Drink for Riders
A fresh fruit juice will provide much needed energy. Caffein is the drink of choice for many Tour De France riders. Many Tour De France riders start the day with plenty of coffee to lift their brain power and energy levels. Moderate doses of caffeine should be well tolerated and provide a legal performance boost.
I just found this marathon nutrition tips by Marathoner Deena Kastor.
It’s a good idea to know which foods provide the biggest carbohydrate bang per serving, but you don’t necessarily have to approach each meal with a fork and a calculator. Marathoner Deena Kastor, who won bronze at the 2004 Olympics, believes that once you understand how your body processes different carbohydrates — that is, which foods provide lasting energy for you — you can approach your meals with an intuitive sense of what you need.
“I focus on adding another heaping spoonful of pasta or a few more potatoes,” she says. “Before the Athens marathon, I also ate a lot of dense fruits with high sugar content: pears, bananas, grapes. They replaced a lot of electrolytes and minerals I knew I was sweating out.”
Read original article calculating carbs for endurance athletes
After a run it is recommended to drink a recovery drink to replenish lost energy, fluid and electrolytes.
Water as running Recovery drink
The cheapest and most popular recovery drink is good old water. Water helps in restoring lost water through sweating and cooling down the body. Drinking water also helps in preparing the stomach for proper food digestion. Experts tend to agree that rehydrating with water until urine is pale yellow is the way to go.
Sports Energy Drinks
Drinkigng a sports energy drink with a mix of carbs, protein and sodium within an hour of finishing the race is crucial.
Carbohydrate Milk Drink
The chocolate milk has the magic 4:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio, is cheap and tastes good.
Whatever you choose, drink what you enjoy
Because carbohydrates are the primary fuel source for active muscles, athletes need to consume them on a daily basis.
Carbohydrate-rich foods include: –
- vegetables (potatoes and beans),
- cereals and some dairy products (milk and yogurt).
In general, the best diet for an athlete is one that contains a variety of foods from each of the major food groups—this will help ensure that your diet is made up of nutrient-rich foods.
Approximately 55-60% of total calories should come from carbohydrates. Athletes need to consume carbohydrates before, during and after exercise to provide fuel for the body and support overall health.