Best Diet to Increase Energy in Running
Even if you’re one of the most skilled runners in the world, you’re going to need quite a bit of energy to keep yourself going. Both slow and steady runs and intense sprints are going to demand adequate fuel that can only be acquired through a proper diet. However, there are a lot of misconceptions as to what’s “right” for athletes. We’re here to cover the top 5 foods you should be eating to increase energy for running.
There’s a reason why you’ll see so many runners consuming bananas. These high-carb natural treats are known to contain a ton of potassium (around 400 mg), which is ideal for long-distance running as well as activity in high temperatures where your mineral levels can get depleted. Potassium helps combat this while also lowering your blood pressure. Moreover, they’re ultra-convenient as you don’t even need Tupperware to carry them around!
Bonus Tip: Add in a tablespoon of natural peanut or almond butter to help replenish your body’s glycogen stores and speed up muscle recovery while boosting the flavor profile of your snack! While they do contain a good amount of fats, these are generally monounsaturated and polyunsaturated which can help lower cholesterol.
If you’re looking for an option not so carb-heavy, check out the childhood classic: broccoli. Paired with salmon, chicken, or even tofu, it tastes delicious. The vegetable offers up a great amount of Vitamin C and K, folate, and manganese. Due to this, your bones will be stronger than ever. Not only that, but it contains quercetin which can help reduce muscle inflammation! This will help get you back on the road or treadmill even quicker with less fatigue and soreness.
#3- Dark Chocolate
Even if you’re the most disciplined runner out there, you should still give yourself a reward every now-and-then. Dark chocolate is perfect because it tastes like dessert but can actually lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and inflammation. Why not indulge in a bit and stick your feet in a good foot massager for an excellent way to decompress and get ready for your next run? The delicious food has even been proven to boost our mood, so eat up!
Bonus Tip: Try adding in a handful of nuts for extra protein and even more energy!
If you want a nice boost of potassium but aren’t feeling the way bananas taste, potatoes are the perfect alternative! Don’t worry if you’re trying to stay lean and mean – 100 grams of papas have 2/3 less calories than the same amount of rice. If you are in the mood for something sweet, opt for a large sweet potato, which can cover your total daily requirement of vitamin A which helps strengthen bones and boosts the immune system. The sweet potato pairs well with avocado and tuna or place it in the oven and use some cinnamon and agave for the perfect dessert.
Who doesn’t love coffee? 2/3 of Olympic athletes sure do, using caffeine to enhance their performance. An 8-ounce cup of coffee contains 95 milligrams of caffeine which will undoubtedly give you a jolt of energy perfect for keeping your body moving, stride after stride. We’ll state the obvious, too: it’s delicious! However, it’s important to note that you need to drink it black – free of milk, sugar, and creamer. Those items will only add extra calories which could be consumed through foods that will help keep your energy levels high.
Eat Consistently: To keep your energy from fluctuating drastically, it’s important to eat regularly. Every 3 hours is the standard and will keep your cortisol levels from shooting up and diving down which is not only healthy but can leave you feeling lethargic. You don’t have to eat full meals every 3 hours. Typically, you can go with alternative one meal and one snack to keep calorie intake low enough for your goals.
Sleep Well: We all know we’re supposed to get at least 8 hours of sleep a night, but do we? Unfortunately, most of us do not. A good night’s sleep is essential to rebuild our muscles and repair the stress we put it through each time we run.
Drink Enough Water: Most runners are well aware of this, but this is important to keep your body functioning properly. As our bodies are made up of over 70% water, it comes as no surprise that our minds and bodies get sluggish if we’re dehydrated.
Now that you’ve read about the top 5 energy-boosting foods for running, which items are you planning on adding into your diet? Perhaps you already eat them and are getting sick of them? Try using them in different recipes or seasoned differently – this can really change the flavors for you. What’s most important is that you’re enjoying your meals, that they are keeping your body healthy, and that you don’t consume too many or too few calories. Thanks for tuning in and we’ll see you again shortly. Happy running!
About the author:
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