Running and Nutrition

Now I don’t need to preach to you about what you put in your body everyday as most people know that a piece of fruit is a better choice than a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup!  Yes, I get it that it tastes great but realistically, I am looking at the long haul as opposed to the quick fix.  I’ve had my dietary problems for years and after I began my running adventures, I found myself opting for better choices and how they make me feel when I do run.  This is coming from someone who had an unreal metabolism and could burn off anything I put in my body!  Over the years, I entered hot and spicy contests and ate so many foods that I never realized would affect me in the long run. (Pun)

A few years back, I was diagnosed with incredibly high cholesterol and triglycerides as well as Gastric Esophageal Reflux Disease.  I blame working at the firehouse and not really having a choice and what we ate.  Most of the time, we had to eat quick unhealthy meals in case we had extended calls.  Well, sadly, that catches up to you.  Of course I was prescribed meds for both the cholesterol and reflux and hated how they made me feel.  I know they did their job to an extent but still made me feel horrible.  After a couple of years on the meds, my numbers didn’t really come down to where we’d like them.  This is where I decided to make some changes.

I started running and while I was slow at first, the constant exercise just made me feel better!  I minimized (not stopped) my love for Dr. Pepper and stopped eating highly acidic and damaging foods.  Over the last 3 years, my running intensified and my diet changed to stay in line with my training.  I began juicing and eating more salads and fruits.  I even convinced some of the guys at the firehouse to try new healthier meals.  My cholesterol and triglycerides and back down to safer levels though I still have a hereditary factor to contend with but off of medications!  I no longer wake up with stomach pain and a horrid taste in my mouth.  I contribute that to what you hear every day…DIET AND EXERCISE!

IMG_6056  SAD        IMG_6057 HAPPY

That brings me to my running nutrition…

Weeks leading to races – less pop, more fruits and vegetables, and basically a healthier choice of meals with few refined sugars and oily choices.

Couple of days before races – Starting to build on my simple sugar carbs with pastas and high fiber fruits/vegetables

Day before races – Smoothie breakfast (recipe below), Sandwich lunch (some sort of sub with turkey, bread, veggies), and a medium sized carb dinner (pasta with meatballs and a light sauce like pesto)

Morning of races – I’m not usually a big breakfast person but only during big events like races or OCRs I’ll have a bagel with honey or peanut butter a couple of hourse before that activity.  I’ll hydrate well before a race but still take a drink during the race.

Post races – Depending on the type of race I did (OCR, 1/2 marathon, 5k) I am usually brutally hungry!  I’m more apt to splurge and eat heavily to refuel.  Right after races, I always opt for a water and some sort of fruit like the usual apple or banana.  But that night???  I am eating like a pig!  This is where I’ll be opting for my muscle rebuilding proteins like meat filled pizza, steak, burgers, chicken marsala, or seafood.

So, I’m still learning what works for my body and I feel it works for me, I still understand that it can be tweaked and adjusted to make it better and more effective.  To be continued…


My recipe for my favorite morning smoothie:

1 jalapeno

1/2 cucumber

1 banana

1 peach

1 handful of kale

1/4 cup of cilantro

1 cup of rice milk

10 blueberries

Squeeze of lime

Either 1/2 cup of watermelon or pineapple

One Comment on “Running and Nutrition

  1. Now I can leave comments!!!! I am technology challenged, haha!
    That’s awesome that you were able to come off of your medications by changing your diet and excersing regularly! I think there are so many people out there that could do the same, but they don’t m have the knowledge, and that’s sad. Good for you for spreading the word! And jalapeño in a smoothie? Hmmm that sounds interesting! Haha maybe I’ll be brave enough to try it someday!

    Liked by 1 person

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Yiannis Christodoulou

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