Quick Breakfast Ideas for Runners on the Go - plus my Race Day Diet! Ben Parkes

Recharging at a distance: what to eat during the race?

Very often, in the pre-start cluster, you can hear runners talking about who took what with them on the distance. All kinds of gels, bars and even friends with a jar of sweet lemonade closer to the finish line - all means are good in the process. Of course, 5 or 10 km can easily be done dry without recharging on the way. But what if your goal is a half marathon or a marathon? We figure out what types of snacks exist and which of them we recommend you take with you.

Recharging at a distance: what to eat during the race?

Photo: istockphoto.com

Why is long-distance nutrition important?

  • It's no secret that during a long run, the loss of fluid in the body is continuous. In a marathon, fluid loss can be up to 5 liters. Such loss of moisture is critical for the body, they lead to a sharp decrease in performance and inevitable fatigue.
How to drink correctly? We advise you to start drinking before the start. Within two hours before the start, before the start of the warm-up, you need to drink about 0.5-0.7 liters of liquid enriched with carbohydrates or electrolytes. After drinking, you need to start from the first food point, and not after the onset of thirst.
Recharging at a distance: what to eat during the race?

Photo: istockphoto.com

  • When running with sweat, the human body loses a huge amount of salt. These are mainly sodium, potassium and magnesium salts. Sodium is involved in the regulation of fluid metabolism in the body.

Conclusion: It will be extremely difficult for an inexperienced runner to run a half marathon (and even more so a marathon) only on the reserves of his body.


  • All researchers agree that in addition to ordinary water, at a long distance, you need to use special sports drinks - isotonic drinks containing carbohydrates and electrolytes. They are the ones that most effectively replenish the loss of fluid in the body.
  • Poorly chewed food, especially coarse food, can injure the esophagus. Keep this in mind when choosing an energy bar or fruit for your snack. Snacking exclusively at food points is not suitable for professionals who run at very high speeds and, as a result, do not have time to chew their food on the run.
Classic scheme of taking sports nutrition: the first portion of the gel is taken 40 minutes after the start and then 20-25 g every 30 minutes.
Recharging at a distance: what to eat during the race?

Photo: istockphoto.com

What can I bring with me?

  • Isotonic. Electrolyte solutions are an ideal remedy for emergency recovery after intense physical exertion. They provide replenishment not only for fluid loss, but also carbohydrates and minerals.
  • Energy Gel. A synthetic glucose derivative made from chemicals to maintain energy in ultra-long racinglong distances. The world's first energy gel was developed in the mid 80's by Dr. Tim Noakes, a physiologist based in Cape Town, and Bruce Fordis. For easier overcoming of the marathon, and, more importantly, for longer distances: ultramarathons of 50-100 km, ultra-trails, 12-hour and daily running, an energy gel was developed. The gels contain caffeine, taurine, sugar, extracts of vitamins C, E and fructose. Plus fixers and flavor enhancers (eg banana, apple). It tastes like a very sweet dense jelly-like liquid. When consumed, it is recommended to drink plenty of water.

It's important: to train your body using gels during training. If consumed for the first time, without accustoming the body to them, they can cause nausea, vomiting and withdrawal from the race.

  • Energy Bar. These are some of the most widely available nutritional supplements for runners and triathletes as a sports nutritional supplement. Our stomach needs food as close to normal as possible in order to function well. Of the entire spectrum of sports nutrition, bars are closest to normal food.
Alternative from the store: in ordinary chocolates, the content of carbohydrates is often even higher than in specialized Mars - 454 kcal and 70.7 g of carbohydrates per 100 grams of product. Snickers is 485 kcal and 60.2 g of carbohydrates.

In a nutshell - if not gels and bars from a specialty store, then what?

If you are going to run your first half marathon, we recommend drinking water at each point (2-3 small sips) and taking two halves of a banana with you for the distance.

At the finish

After you cross the finish line, remember to recover ... Within an hour after the end of intense exertion, you can drink restorative isotonic drinks (yes, the very ones that helped us store energy at a distance) containing amino acids. This will optimize the post-exercise energy recovery process.

Recharging at a distance: what to eat during the race?

Photo: istockphoto.com

Remember that half marathon and marathon are amazingly ambitious goals. Get ready and minimize your risks at a distance, choose the right food, consult with professionals and then,

Recharging my Garmin 310 XT while running

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