How to eat well in competition?
“What should I eat before and after my run? “Is the eternal question we often get asked! First and foremost, you need to make sure you have everything you need on your plate the night before, in the morning and after the race.
The right choices to make
Starting with dinner the day before your race:
First, eat a high carbohydrate dinner the night before. Plan more than half of your meal in starchy foods (bread, pasta, rice, couscous, potatoes, etc.). Protein and vegetables take up about the other half in equal parts on your plate. A dairy product (or substitute) and fruit are also recommended to complement your meal or as a snack before bed.
Also, be sure to hydrate yourself well, drinking at least a glass of water and taking into account the amount and color of your urine (aim for lemonade-colored urine!).
The morning of the event:
Breakfast the morning of the race must be rich in carbohydrates (bread, bagel, cereals, fruit, milk or substitute, yogurt, syrup, honey, jam), in addition to containing a small amount of protein (such as nut butter or seeds or dairy products). This is because protein will support you longer and prevent you from feeling hungry before noon. The goal is to eat a very high carbohydrate breakfast to maximize your energy reserves 2 to 3 hours before the start of your race !
Here’s an example of a pre-race breakfast:
- 1 tbsp nut or seed butter
- 1tbsp of jam
- 1 cup of milk or soy beverage or 1 fruit yogurt
During the event:
Remember these basic rules to feel good about your race.
- Avoid as much as possible large amounts of fat at breakfast (butter, oils, sausages, bacon, fatty cheeses, etc.) as well as large portions of protein that take a long time to digest before you take off.
- Also, avoid too much fiber, such as high-fiber breakfast cereals.
- Test what you like to eat and drink before you run during your workouts, not for the first time on event day.
- Fragile stomach, unable to eat? Prefer liquid foods, which digest better and cause less intestinal disturbance (eg: Fruit smoothie, Carnation instant breakfast, drinkable yogurt) and dry grain products (crackers, non-milk breakfast cereals, etc.).
- Drink water or diluted juice within 2 hours before the start of the race and during warm-up.
After the race:
Post-workout nutrition is a crucial step in rehydrating yourself, replenishing your energy stores, repairing muscle tissue, and avoiding being very hungry for hours after the activity. So remember to consume carbohydrates and proteins for the perfect recovery! Also, don’t forget to drink plenty of water after the run, listen to your thirst, and drink until your urine is clear. If your perspiration is salty, eat foods high in sodium (cheese, crackers, vegetable juices, etc.).
Examples of snacks to recover after the race:
- Chocolate milk (200 ml) + 1 peanut butter toast
- Greek yogurt with fruit • 1 large apple or banana + 50g cheese
- Yogurt (100g) + some almonds (10-12) + 1 fresh fruit
Good luck with your race!