How to Fuel Your Body Properly for Long Distance Running

Trainer's Club Ragnar TeamThis past weekend, Trainer’s Club participated in the Ragnar Trail Relay at McDowell Mountain. It was an absolute blast but you would not believe the amount of people that were fueling their body improperly. We wanted to take the time to explain how to fuel your body for optimal energy levels and to help prevent you from getting dehydrated on your long distance run.

Your body has enough energy to function without foods that will take less than forty five minutes, but in the case that your running for more than forty five minutes, it is important to fuel your body before you start your run. Bananas are a great energy source because they are rich in sugar that your body will burn off while you run. Bananas also contain potassium which has a ton of health benefits. Berries are also a great pre-run food option because they contain vitamin C which helps your body function at its best. Berries also contain sugar that your body will use as energy while you run. Bagels are another great option because they are a food loaded with carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are our body’s energy source and eating some before a long distance run helps us sustain energy levels during our run. A little bit of peanut butter on your bagel would be super helpful because peanut butter contains protein, which your body will use to fuel your muscles. Another awesome example is low-fat yogurt. The protein and carbohydrates in the yogurt will help your muscles run optimally while also giving you energy to sustain you while your run.


Are you feeling that mid-run tiredness? You can fuel up while you’re out there running! Keep a couple of these snack examples to consume when you start feeling low energy! Energy gels are made by most sports drink companies. Energy gels are carbohydrate gels that help give you a quick boost of energy and also help with recovery after your run. Starburst candies are another great example. They’re soft and easy to consume while you run and also contain some sugar to help get your energy levels up. Another example is raisins. A handful of raisins contains a ton of sugar and can really help you out when you feel like your energy tank is getting low. 


It is important to refuel after a run to ensure proper recovery. Chicken breast is a great post run food because it is a lean protein that is loaded with the nutrients your body needs to recover. Another great example is oats because they are rich in carbs and also contain protein and fiber. Fruit is a great choice as well, especially apples and oranges. Apples and oranges are rich in vitamin C and they also replenish your bodies energy. Apples are especially good because they contain nutrients you need after sweating for an extended period of time. 


We hope this post helps you be better prepared for your next long distance run. As always, if you need any help training or need additional help with nutrition, please visit our contact us page so we can give you the help you’re looking for!


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