However, pasta isn't the only food that may help you run well, and optimal feeding benefits more than just endurance runners. What you eat before, during, and after your run is critical to feeling good, picking up your speed, and recovering quickly. Eating before a run allows your body to digest the food and prepare yourself for physical activity. This also gives your nervous system time to get into a running state, so you're not thinking about eating while you run.
Eating right after a run ensures that you're refueling properly. The most important factor here is that you are consuming enough calories overall. If you go too long without eating then you risk suffering from energy depletion, which will cause you to slow down your heart rate and respiration. When this happens, it's called "hitting the wall". You need to find a way to keep yourself going even when you feel like stopping. This might mean taking extra water breaks or changing up your routine for variety!
Finally, if you plan to exercise vigorously over an extended period of time (such as a marathon), then it's important to feed your body regularly throughout the day. This helps you avoid getting hungry and tempted by foods that are not only unhealthy, but also slow you down such as sugar cravings or binge eating.
So, whether you need to eat before or after a run, remember to fuel your body correctly overall.
There's a reason why so many marathons and half-marathons include a pre-race pasta feast the night before: A healthy carbohydrate reserve is an important part of powering your optimum performance. Most runners are aware that they should consume pasta, rice, potatoes, or other high-carb meals prior to a half or full marathon. What many don't realize is that these foods are also extremely effective at keeping them feeling full for longer periods of time, which means they're less likely to eat again before the race begins.
The best option is to eat something with both complex carbohydrates and some protein in it as well. This will give your body all the nutrients it needs to function at its best while reducing your risk of hitting the bathroom early.
For your pre-run meal, you can choose between several options: Pizza, sandwiches, salads, cookies, etc. The choice is yours! As long as it contains plenty of healthy ingredients, you'll be more than ready to hit the road tomorrow morning.
These glycogen stores supply you with the energy you require during the marathon. When purchasing pasta or bread, consider whole-grain varieties—these will keep you fuller for longer and contain more B vitamins (like bananas, too). These are necessary for muscle growth and can boost endurance and performance. Eating foods that are high in carbohydrates (such as pasta, bread, fruit, and potatoes) after training will help your body rebuild itself following hard workouts. Protein is also important for running form and muscle repair, so include some meat, fish, eggs, beans, or nuts in your diet every day.
Other recommendations include drinking plenty of water (one hour before eating then another hour after eating will help) and avoiding sugar-filled snacks such as cookies and candy. Fasting before a race allows your body to lose any unwanted fluids and uric acid through bowel movement, which can lead to better performance.
At the end of a long race, it's important to replenish lost fluids, replace depleted glycogen stores, and recover from the stress of the event. A simple way to do this is by eating and drinking after the race. Some post-race meals that have been shown to be effective for recovery include chicken, turkey, pork, beef, egg noodles, rice, or quinoa. Be sure to drink at least one gallon of fluid per person per day after a long run or race.