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Tips for Your Race Preparation

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In a marathon, it’s the appropriate training and preparation that will get you throughout the end line. An necessary a part of your training plan is your food plan. But there’s much more to it than simply what you eat earlier than and after you run. The proper snacks and fluids in the course of the race may help you run sooner and enhance your efficiency. You’ll see one of the best outcomes should you start taking a more in-depth have a look at your marathon nutrition weeks earlier than the massive day.

Macronutrients for Runners: A Breakdown

  • If you’re an endurance athlete, you must get to know and love carbohydrates. They are a very powerful macronutrient and may make up about 60-65% of your caloric consumption. Your muscle mass depend on carbohydrates for gasoline. They are saved as glycogen in your liver for use in a while once you want a fast burst of vitality. Keeping carbs as a staple in your food plan will allow you to keep (and enhance) your efficiency and allow you to obtain that objective time you have got your thoughts set on.(1) Depending on the depth of your workouts, 6 to 10 g of carbs per kilo of body weight are sufficient to maintain your glycogen shops full. Everyone’s wants are, after all, totally different. Additionally, carbohydrates assist your body recuperate publish exercise.2) Additionally, carbohydrates assist your body recuperate publish exercise. Aim for complicated carbohydrates like quinoa, candy potatoes, complete grains, greens and legumes.
  • Protein is the building block of muscle. It’s really helpful that you simply devour 1-1.5 g/kg of your body weight – that is depending on how intense your workouts are. If you’re doing extra strength training, versus operating, then you definitely positively want extra of this macronutrient than endurance athletes. Protein is present in each animal merchandise (meat, fish, eggs, milk, and dairy merchandise) in addition to plant-based meals (soy and soy merchandise, legumes, nuts, seitan, grain merchandise). You can cowl all of your protein wants with a vegan diet should you select. The focus right here ought to be on together with quite a lot of meals in your food plan with loads of recent fruit and greens.
  • Fat is an incredibly important source of energy and important for your body! First of all, it acts as a protector for your organs, insulates your body (retains you heat) and is important to soak up these vital fat-soluble nutritional vitamins (A, D, E and Ok). One gram of fats comprises 9 energy of vitality. This is twice as a lot as protein and carbohydrates. How a lot fats do you want? Around 30-35% of your each day caloric consumption ought to be fat. Where can you discover healthy fat? Avocados, salmon, vegetable oils, nuts, and seeds (like flax and chia). These fat present tons of vitality for your marathon training.

salmon avocado sandwich

Preparation is Everything

Training isn’t the one factor to consider within the closing weeks earlier than a marathon. The proper marathon nutrition will allow you to run sooner. Get knowledgeable concerning the race arrange beforehand: what number of support stations will there be alongside the course? Don’t attempt something new on race day; solely devour meals and drinks that you simply’ve examined throughout training. Try out totally different choices within the weeks earlier than the marathon.

Are you feeling unsure?

A dietician who focuses on sports activities nutrition can reply any questions you’ll have and get you heading in the right direction with marathon nutrition.

The Final Countdown

Carb Loading

Since the race will take longer than 90 minutes, it’s advisable to extend your carb consumption within the days main as much as the marathon. The objective of carb loading is to refill your glycogen shops. 

However, that doesn’t imply that you must overdo it with carbohydrates. Gradually enhance your carbohydrate consumption within the week earlier than the marathon to extend the quantity of glycogen in your muscle mass. Do you have got digestive issues? Fiber is important for athletes, however be certain to cut back your fiber consumption to a minimal simply earlier than and on race day.


Make certain you go into the race nicely hydrated. Start paying attention to your fluid consumption 24 hours earlier than the occasion. 

Marathon Preparation on Race Day

Breakfast 3-4 hours earlier than a run:
You need an easy-to-digest breakfast to energy you up for your race. Stay away from meals which are excessive in fats and fiber. These meals will sit in your abdomen too lengthy – not a very good feeling whereas operating. And, if you would like that further enhance, go for a cup of black coffee to get you energized.

bircher müsli

Breakfast concepts:

  • white toast with jam and a small portion of plain yogurt
  • Bircher muesli (soak oats in a single day in low-fat cow milk, soy, or oat milk) with banana
  • cereal (not the sugary form!) with milk
  • porridge with berries

Don’t overlook to drink sufficient water earlier than the marathon.

Snack approx. 1 hour earlier than:
If you’re used to eating a small snack earlier than your run, go for it! Remember, that is all about how you’re feeling and the way you have got accomplished it throughout your training runs.
Snack choices:

Take sips out of your water bottle recurrently.

During your run:

There are two crucial issues to recollect throughout your race: carbs and fluids. Getting the correct quantity of each is vital.

woman drinking


The really helpful carbohydrate consumption for lengthy endurance workouts is 30 to 60 g per hour.(3) That quantity will increase to 90 g of carbs per hour for races that last more than 2.5 hours.

The following meals are wealthy in carbohydrates:

  • Banana (approx. 30 g)
  • Energy gel (approx. 25 g)
  • Energy bar (20 to 40 g) 

Fluid Level

Runners lose a substantial amount of fluid and electrolytes (particularly sodium and potassium) from sweating closely throughout lengthy runs. These fluids have to get replaced. The solely solution to know the way a lot fluid you’ve misplaced is by weighing your self earlier than and after your marathon training. Try it to get an thought of how a lot you must drink on race day.

Drink 600 to 1200 ml of fluid per hour of exertion.(4) Your beverage of alternative ought to comprise carbs, sodium, and potassium. Isotonic drinks are an ideal supply of vitality for your run. Isotonic means it has the identical osmotic stress as blood plasma, so it’s capable of be rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream. This is the proper resolution for misplaced fluids and electrolytes throughout your long term. You may even make your own sports drink at home for your marathon! 

Immediately after the Marathon

In order to refill your glycogen shops, some suggestions advise you to devour about 1 to 1.2g of carbohydrates per kg of body weight within the first few hours after you end the race. However, that is solely crucial should you’ve acquired one other race in 8 to 10 hours. That’s most likely not the case, proper? Don’t fear an excessive amount of about what you eat after your marathon. Celebrate your achievement; you simply completed a marathon and ought to be happy with your self. 


Your marathon nutrition ought to be well-planned. No matter whether or not it’s earlier than or throughout your race, it’s necessary to decide on the appropriate drinks and meals to make you run sooner and carry out your finest. 


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