Recently I’ve experimented with a number of pre-run meals. I’ve tried everything from eating nothing to eating a full plate of bacon and eggs. I don’t think there is one right answer to the best thing to eat before a run, but I do think that there are two things that you can do to improve your run by taking in some fuel to keep you going.
Eat something with the right nutrients
Just like a car, your body needs fuel to run. It also runs better when you put higher octane fuel in the tank. Your body craves high-carb, low fat, and low fiber meals when you hit the road. Bananas, yogurt and oats are all good options.
Wait ample time for digestion
Digestion requires a large amount of the body’s energy. Think about all the work it takes for the food to navigate the intestines and to be broken down in the stomach. Because of all this work your blood flow is directed to the stomach instead of the muscles. If you set out to run while your stomach is still digesting your food, you will rob your muscles of the energy they need. We just are not not designed to do both digestion and exercise at the same time. Give yourself about 1 hour for every 250 calories you eat.