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How do y'all fuel up for running?

skhill2010-05-01 10:18:53 +0000 #1
I've been having trouble figuring out what to eat before running, so I thought I'd ask all you wise folks what y'all do....

I usually run first thing in the morning, and I don't usually feel like eating at that hour. I'm fine going 3 or so miles on only a cup of coffee, but if I'm going much further than that I do need to eat first. I've tried a wide range of nibbles, from pretzels to half a peanut-butter sandwich (and that really didn't agree with me!). I've done best on a couple home-made peanut butter cookies (but making cookies is a pain and I don't do it often). Any other suggestions? (I don't/won't do energy bars or other packaged, processed foods, BTW, both for reasons of cost and principle too)...

Thanks!

Sharon
Crankin2010-05-01 10:30:08 +0000 #2
I found that I can run after having a nice bowl of oatmeal and some blueberries. Usually I have a Luna bar if I am running first thing in the AM, but I just feel better with real food. Of course, my long run is 5 miles, so take it for what it's worth. But, I won't go out for a run without eating something, even for 2 miles.
Veronica2010-05-01 11:07:23 +0000 #3
I tried all sorts of regular food. But nothing sat well. I can do up to 4 miles on just some OJ. For my longer runs I eat a Hammer Gel. I know you said you didn't want to go that route. I didn't either, but it's the only thing I've been able to eat w/o wanting to vomit or find a bathroom.

Veronica
OakLeaf2010-05-01 10:56:03 +0000 #4
As far as gels, I've been using plain brown rice syrup, slightly diluted with water, in a gel flask on my long runs. It's the #1 ingredient in Clif Shot Blox and it works really well for me (although I need more sodium, which I'm going to start adding). Tastes kinda funky, but I can't stand the waste of "boughten" gels either. If you're not gluten intolerant, barley malt is another alternative that would also taste better than rice syrup.

Generally, first thing in the morning, if I'm going to be going straight to a workout or not, cold cereals are my #1 concession to pre-packaged, processed food.

But you could easily make your own granola or muesli, or have hot cereal (which you can make a week's worth at a time and microwave individual portions). Whether I'm eating cold or hot cereal, I add a handful of nuts or peanut butter for sustained energy, protein and healthy fats, and a handful of fresh or dried fruit.

If I'm going to have hot cereal before a run, I do much better if I make it more like a porridge or gruel. Using the "normal" amount of water makes it sit pretty heavily in my stomach.
yellow2010-05-01 11:16:59 +0000 #5
I must be a weirdo. For my long runs, I MUST have a scrambled egg with chopped up morningstar farms "sausage", all wrapped up in a tortilla. Along with a few cups of coffee. Sometimes I'll have this as little as 0.5 hour before I run.

For my mid-week, every day type of runs, I don't even think about it (generally because they are shorter). I pretty much always take water for anything 6 miles + and if I'm going to be out for 8-9 miles I'll take HEED in place of water.

I just don't really think about it that much!
colby2010-05-01 11:36:44 +0000 #6
+1 for oatmeal (1/2 cup water per packet, a little milk on top). It's the one time I don't feel so guilty about eating the higher sugar stuff. Bananas are pretty safe for me, too. For a long run (2 hours+), 2 packets (and carry food/water), shorter day (1 hour+), 1 (and carry water), if it's just less than an hour probably nothing as long as it's first in the morning or I've eaten a couple of hours ago.

If it is one of those "first in the morning" shorter deals I might grab some gel or shot bloks/chomps before I go just to have some energy in me, especially if I wake up hungry and am too impatient to eat. I've done long runs on "nothing" too but it feels better to have something in the tummy.

For long runs (2 hours+), nothing super high fiber (kashi golean oatmeal/cereal/roll is too high, and the "high fiber" branded oatmeals are too, for me). I have the same problem with long/hard rides (or bricks), too... too much fiber makes colby's tummy go something-something.

I've been able to do creamy pb on toast/english muffin in place of oatmeal and done okay, too. I've done bagel with creamy pb, too, at least once. Not sure about crunchy PB - haven't had the opportunity, both times I was eating someone else's sacrilegious creamy PB
canonsue2010-05-01 12:22:38 +0000 #7
Back in the old days when I was running and training for a marathon, the only thing that worked for me was to eat a banana. For longer runs I used a nutrition drink or gel to keep going.

-Sue

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