Every sports / exercise gives you more flexibility, strength and endurance. But the body cannot perform if its fuel supply is inadequate, imbalanced or most importantly not timed correctly. To peak athletic performance, the key is nutrition, the timing and technique of consuming your much needed high quality food.
As Mumbai, Bangalore, New Delhi gets ready to run with marathon around the corner, here are some smart eating tips for all athletes.
“I wasn’t feeling well in the first half. I felt down, man. I had three slices of pizza before the game and the food took me down.” Says basketball star Leroy Loggins, after the 1986 semi-final
100 days before Race Day
- 30 mins prior to training, have a glass full of casein / skim milk. This will suffice the nutrition needs during the training hours.
- Simple sugars such as fruits only give you short spurts of energy which are used up within the first 10 minutes of your activity, leaving you slow and sluggish towards the peak of your workout.
- Plan for “eat to last till the end,” with your work outs as well as D-Day. So never compromise, a 30 minutes gap is good enough between your meal and activity depending on the quantity prescribed.
- During endurance training, drink electrolyte rich fluids.
- Once training starts full swing, and you start to count the days, take small meals which are rich in carbohydrates and low in fats and proteins.
- Large Meal – Brown rice, vegetables, lentil soup, and multigrain rotis.
- Small meal -– Egg whites, oats dosa, sprouts upma
7 days before Race Day
Plan your pre marathon week meal smartly. Pick right amount of carbohydrates, total calories intake should be appropriate. DO NOT reduce the calorie intake that last week.
Avoid new and outside food during this week. Adhere to your training schedule meal plans.
- 2 days before -Your last big dinner pre – marathon should be 2 days before the D day.
- 1 day before – Last meal on the night before marathon should be light dinner cooked in minimum oil and spices. This will aid digestion and prevent bloating on the marathon day. Vegetable Khichdi and curd or Roti with paneer bhurjee would be ideal.
- Early morning- light breakfast 3 hours prior to the run. One large bowl of milk, cornflakes, almonds, apricots and banana are ideal choices.
What is essential during the race?
Hydration – Whenever you feel thirsty have small sips of room temperature water. Ideally you must drink 2 glasses of fluids 2 hours before exercise and 1 glass of fluids 10 minutes before the exercise. Keep drinking small sips during the exercise. Water, electral, Coconut water, buttermilk, lemon juice, moderate sugar juices are the many fluid options.
What could be the quick recovery plan post marathon?
- Your body has gone through tremendous stress after running for 42 kms, or even 21 kms. It’s crucial to provide correct nutrition to body for quick recovery. Include 100gms of carbohydrates every hour, for four hours after the run. This can include banana, 1 cup yogurt, 1 bowl of nuts , 1 large bowl of salad-sprouts, tomatoes, cucumber, spinach, corn, pomegranate etc.
- Increase intake of protein rich foods like soya bean, dals, pulses, eggs, meat, fish, poultry etc for quick recovery of muscles and tissues.
Nutrition tips for any athletic endurance training
- Beetroot releases nitric oxide that regulate blood flow, bump seconds off your race time with a healthy salad
- Peanut butter pre-workout releases extra dopamine to improve your mental focus
- Pomegranates are high in the polyphenols known to cut muscle soreness and inflammation by up to 10%
- Aim for 20-50 grams of protein after each workout depending on your bodyweight. Most women will do fine with 20 grams, while men should aim for the upper range
- Your potassium reserves get sapped after a workout. Potassium, among other nutrients like sodium and calcium, is a key mineral which plays a role in muscular energy. Which is why Mumbai Marathon gives bananas to their runners.
- Muscle fuel can be very low after an your overnight fast. Consider these breakfast options:
- A mini cinnamon-raisin bagel with flavored cream cheese OR
- English muffin sandwich with a slice of lean ham and/or reduced-fat cheese AND
- Vanilla Greek yogurt with a variety of toppings (homemade granola, chopped almonds or walnuts, or dried fruit) OR
- Yogurt smoothies in a variety of flavors OR
- 100-percent fruit juices
As we prepare to become a sporting nation, let us retrospect, if our eating habits and fitness levels and our bodies are equipped to adapt to this new and healthy trend. Our attitude towards sports is changing but is our attitude towards diet changing?
For customised diet plans and training modules, call us on +91 22 4010 0414 or click http://bit.ly/MuscleNEndurancePlan
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iPink by Tripti Gupta is a leading Mumbai based Lifestyle Nutritionist, with 17 years of experience in providing result oriented customized diets for all kinds of weight, beauty, sports, medical and age related issues. We have been trained in dietetics and nutrition, and are a certified advanced sports nutritionist and trained with the Reebok institute of aerobics.