Ready to get back on the road…some diet pointers?

Tomorrow I attempt my come back to road running. I entered the Northgate 10km road run out in the west of Joburg.

Have been meaning to run this race for three years now, but there’s always been a reason why “I” haven’t. The first year I wanted to run our son was too young, so hubby ran it. Last year I think I remembered the race way too late, I don’t like entering the race on the day or maybe it was just another excuse as the race is always held in winter.

This year I’m definitely running it. If like me you’re making a comeback 🙂 or perhaps it’s your first race or maybe it’s not any of those, I’m sharing a few pointers you should not forget about your diet for tomorrow I read recently in Runners World that resonate with me.

  • Make sure you have your breakfast at least 2 hours before the race starts. I find that if I eat too close to the start of the race I’m bombarded by stitches as my body fights back, other side effects include cramps and unnecessary toilet visits along the route.
  • When I started on Herbalife shakes I would have one before the race. I stopped as the mix of protein powder and milk just made me feel extremely nauseous. High protein diets and fats take a while to leave your tummy. Rather go with a light carb meal like toast with peanut butter and banana, alternatively, try oats. I have it and find it works for me.
  • I’ve run a race or two where they have run out of water and I was nowhere near the finish. I wasn’t a happy camper and neither were a number of runners who also couldn’t get any form of hydration, so make sure you are well hydrated before the race starts. Don’t drink too close to the start or you will be breaking your run to find a bush or toilet.
  • After the race where the organisers had not managed the water requirements for the day well, I’ve since opted to pick up a water sachet or two and carry it with me to the next water point, unless of course, I feel the need to drink. If I haven’t I swap it for colder water .. in summer. Please don’t go trying to overcompensate by drinking too much at the water points. Sips will do just fine.
  • At the races, you will find that the watering tables will offer not just water but other drinks too. In some cases and especially the large attendance races, this is especially so, do not be tempted to try new drinks or any of the eats that may be on offer. The last thing you want is to suddenly be attacked by a bout of the tummy runs during the race. You have two choices, either stick to what you have used during training or if you have an idea on what will be offered .. sample these products way before the race.
  • The last point, don’t be tempted to rush for a beer or glass of wine within the first 60 minutes post your run, highly unlikely you will want one or the other after if it’s as cold as tomorrow will be out here in Joburg, but hey .. just remember that if you opt for the beer as quickly as you consume it, it leaves your body just as fast because of alcohol’s diuretic effect. Rather go for water! I’m not a big eater post a run, but if you are, opt for some yoghurt or protein bar to complement your water.

Are you running a race or just going for a run tomorrow? Remember to have fun, just don’t be tempted to lay in all day 🙂