"I'd rather be seen on my bicycle than on a park run" - Quote from the dark side

Monday, 3 May 2010

What is your favorite pre-race meal and/or drink?

Do you eat anything before a race? This is something I’ve experimented with and it seems that the answer varies from person to person. Some can’t run with food in their stomach while others can’t run with empty stomachs. I’ve tried both and find that I do better if I eat something before a race.

I usually have coffee with rusks or coffee with toast and honey about 2 hours before a race. I try to do the same always and will have the same before a 10km race as I would before a marathon or ultra. The idea is to get used to the same stomach content and even pre-race routine when preparing for the race ahead. If I’m running a longer race I’ll have a gel or gu 15 minutes before the start as well. When I’m training I drink water only before my run but will sometimes have a gel if the run is longer than 15km.

At the moment this seems to work for me so I’m not changing anything. What is your favorite pre-race meal or do you prefer an empty stomach?


Unknown said...

We are similar on the pre-race. I usually do whole wheat bagel with peanut butter and a coffee. Do the same on long training days. My post race is a little different. If I remember I will take some Ultragen recovery drink with me. It is 300 calories so it really helps and it helps recovery as well.

The weird thing is that after just running events I am not usually that hungry? But if i swim and bike before the run I am STARVING!

But all that being said ... nothing is better post-race than a couple nice big old slices of pizza!

Colin Hayes said...

My pre-race meal is pretty similar to my standard breakfast - cereal w/milk, english muffin with peanut butter and some coffee. I may eat less cereal, and on race morning, I get up early enough to eat it about 2 1/2 to 3 hours before the race. I also have trouble eating after a long race or long training run. I usually drink chocolate milk and snack for awhile, just to get some calories in.

Giorgio said...

Hi Johann,
Excellent question! I can't absolutely run with empty stomach. My pre-race meal is the same: coffee with toast and honey or jam. I'd add half cup of milk mixed with coffee.
And what about the evening before a race? What do you usually eat the evening before a race? As you know I posted a simple potatoe dish recipe, but the American magazine "Rinners' world" advices "pizza".

Quinton J said...

It depends on the distance but my staple has been a bagel with peanut butter, a banana, a coffee and water. I suppose once you find something that works...you just stick to it. For recovery on long runs I've been taking an Ensure meal replacement. Quick calorie replacement with all of the vitamins and minerals and carbs and protein in the right ratios. They are pretty high in calories (they're supossed to replace meals) so I usually only have it as soon as I get in the door from a really long run.

Rad Runner said...

Great question! I am very simple, picky but simple.
1/2 of a Luna Bar (Berry Almond) and a teeny tiny bit of water.

Along the way, for 13 miles and up I will pop some Luna Lady Chew gummies in my mouth, and I am happily on my way, with sips of water.

I get way to excited/ nervous... etc. to put anything else in my tummy.

Anne said...

Thanks for the suggestions everyone :)

Julie said...

Hi Johann,
I always eat the same thing...half of a bagel with PB and honey, half of a banana and yogurt:) I also take sport beans about 10 to 15 minutes before the start. This was a great question! I hope that you have a great day Johann!

ajh said...

I have toast with peanut butter and coffee before a race.

Unknown said...

Coffee. That's it. I'm so bad :( !

The Navy Christian said...

I have toast with peanut butter and a banana. I only drink enough water to wash it down. I don't want to be uncomfortable having to wait in a long line before the race start!

Molly said...

Wow, everyone likes the same meal! I must have coffee, water, Powerade Zero, peanut butter toast, and a banana. I do it early enough before the race so it has a chance to digest.