What are Superior Foods to Consume Just before a Operate

Fueling prior to a run is just as significant as generating confident you lace up in the appropriate running shoes. Like functioning footwear, what you take in prior to a operate can greatly influence how you come to feel for the duration of and even following your operate. Whilst each individual experienced runner agrees that fueling appropriately right before a run is important, we’re normally on the hunt for the most effective snack or recipe. But in truth, the finest possibility is whatever works perfectly for you and that may perhaps get some demo and error.

What are Good Foods to Eat Before a Run

What are Very good Meals to Take in Prior to A Operate

1st, let us dive into some basic information and facts about how distinctive foods gas our bodies. And how those people meals are utilized in a different way relying on the kind of run you are performing.

When we head out for a run, most of our gas arrives from the saved fat and carbohydrate (aka glycogen shops) in our physique. Those shops comes from the food stuff that we consume in the times main up to a run (which is why you want to imagine about your carb load days just before race day). But, what you try to eat instantly before you operate won’t be stored as glycogen, but relatively, will be more readily utilised in the course of the operate.

For case in point, if you eat a food significant in carbs right just before you operate, then you are going to melt away a higher proportion of carbohydrates through the training. This is specifically helpful for velocity get the job done.

To fuel more time operates, you’ll want to combine carbs with protein and unwanted fat to assistance retain starvation at bay. A food complete with macronutrients can enable delay the onset of tiredness, enhance stamina and overall performance. (There are unique styles of carbs to consider as nicely!)

So, when deciding on a pre run food, you are going to want to assume about what style of operate you’re carrying out.

If it is a extensive operate, make sure you pair your carbs with some protein and unwanted fat (e.g. toast with peanut butter or a couple of vitality balls). If it’s a far more extreme exercise session with intervals or tempo miles, you are going to want a greater ratio of carbs in your pre-operate food (e.g. toast with honey, oatmeal with raisins, etc.). That’s not to say you should not have any body fat or protein in your pre-operate meal if you’re undertaking speedwork. But, you do want much more carbs.

What about fasted operates? I’ll run on an empty stomach for a shorter, effortless run (e.g. 30-40 minutes), but I do NOT do fasted runs for long runs or any kind of speed training like intervals or tempo work. CARBS ARE Significant, especially for runners!!!

Alright, let us dive into some of my go-to alternatives!

Electricity Balls

I have a few various power ball recipes that I enjoy but these oatmeal and honey strength balls are the ones I use most usually.  (I also adore these S’mores power balls and these Tahini energy balls.)  Power balls are great because you can make a massive batch and freeze them and just grab a pair prior to your operate. I typically try to eat 1-2 ahead of my operate, with espresso, about 30 minutes in advance of I head out the doorway. (I also sip on h2o with LMNT electrolytes right before my operate. Fluids are great!) Energy balls are wonderful for straightforward operate days or for longer runs at an straightforward speed.

oatmeal and honey energy balls


A further pre-operate snack I adore is peanut butter toast with banana and/or honey. At times I include chia seeds on top also. You can put just about anything you want on your toast, but I have discovered that peanut butter sits effectively with my abdomen and the further body fat and protein aids keep me total vs. if I just have simple or buttered toast. If I add honey, I get a minor excess carb enhance as effectively, which is handy on extensive operate or tough exercise routine times.

I take in toast right before all types of runs – long, limited, easy, powerful. What varies is what I prime the toast with, dependent on the type of training, and how many parts I take in, depending on how long I’m managing. I like Dave’s Killer Bread, but if you want gluten-no cost, I like Trader Joe’s gluten totally free bread when it is toasted. That is what’s pictured underneath – I lived on that when I was expecting and very nauseous all a few trimesters.

What are Good Foods to Eat Before a Run

Jacket | Tank | Leggings | Footwear

Technology UCAN Athletics Consume or Power Bar

Generation UCAN helps make energy bars that are super quick to digest pre-operate. I typically eat 50 percent of a single for a run which is under 6 miles. If I’m functioning extended than an hour, I’ll consume the total bar. (I like the salted peanut butter flavor.) They also have a pre-operate drink powder if you actually battle with reliable foods in advance of a run. Though I do not do nicely with most pre-run sporting activities beverages (they upset my belly), I tolerate Gen UCAN’s well. Prior to most runs, I adhere to serious food selections, but if I’m operating late or traveling, Gen UCan products do the job nicely.

Be aware: use promo code AFOODIESTAYSFIT for 15% off your total purchase. (If you’re placing an order, get their plant dependent chocolate protein powder. It is one particular of my favorites!)

Electricity Gels or Chews

Electricity gels are yet another option if solid food is challenging for you to tummy. I like Honey Stingers most effective, but there are a whole lot of manufacturers out there (GU, Skratch, Clif). This is the greatest option if you only have about 15 minutes ahead of a run and no time to digest, but given that there is not protein or unwanted fat, you will very likely get hungry mid-run. So use these pre-operate in a pinch and only on short operates. (Gels and chews are best employed for fueling mid-run!)

Dates stuffed with nut butter

This is one particular of the quickest pre-operate treats to place collectively and I also feel like it offers me the fastest burst of electrical power of all the alternatives. I invest in medjool dates (Trader Joe’s has them!), slice them open up, take out the pit and things it with peanut butter or tahini. (Almond butter is effective good also). Two or three of these does the trick! I like this selection just before tempo operates.

Dates stuffed with nut butter | What are Good Foods to Eat Before a Run

Sliced banana with peanut butter + salt

I love bananas to fight muscle mass cramps, peanut butter for protein (and who doesn’t really like pb!), and salt to support equilibrium how considerably I sweat. This is a little bit lighter of a snack, so I use this for shorter runs, e.g. 3-4 miles. Or, if I have tempo work on my education routine, I’ll do toast topped with peanut butter and bananas to get extra carbs!

Sliced banana with peanut butter + salt | What are Good Foods to Eat Before a Run pre-run snacks


Bagels are a go-to for many runners! Comparable to toast, you can leading them with anything at all. But, in contrast to toast, bagels are a lot more dense so you may well will need more time to digest. I discover they sit too major, but I have a pretty sensitive tummy (which you have possibly collected), so give it a go! They’re an inexpensive, quick option for so several runners!


ONLY if I have far more time to digest, do I make oatmeal. I Really like oatmeal but it can sit a little bit heavy for me. (My digestion is Sluggish.) But, if you have a little bit additional time to digest right before your run (45-60 minutes or extra), oats are a terrific alternative. Prompt oats will most likely be easier to stomach pre-run than their considerably less processed model, aged fashioned oats. And I would stay clear of steel lower oatmeal pre-operate! (But bruleed banana metal minimize oats are 1 of my beloved write-up run meals!!)

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a Excellent addition to a runner’s diet and they serve as a foundation for terrific toppings, very similar to toast and oatmeal. I find them much easier to digest than a bagel or oats, but experiment to see what is effective most effective for you. A registered dietitian even advised a sweet potato for a pre-marathon breakfast due to the fact you will ordinarily have 90 minutes+ or even hrs in advance of running from the time you consume breakfast to when you commence the race.

Sweet Potatoes for runners

Food items to Avoid Ahead of a Operate


I avoid all meats before operating since whilst they are superior in protein, they do not have carbs — unless you pair it with something else. But, no matter, superior quantities of protein are tricky to digest right before a operate and glycogen is the least complicated resource of gas for your overall body to use. So, give it glycogen! And glycogen arrives from carbs, not meat!


I personally continue to be away from way too much dairy in advance of a operate. Dairy products can pack a whole lot of protein (especially greek yogurt!) which is not what we’re seeking for pre-operate. On top of that, dairy is a typical perpetrator for an upset stomach.  If you’re topping granola with a minimal greek yogurt or putting some cream cheese on a bagel, that should be high-quality. But I’d skip the big bowl of yogurt or a cheesy omelet and save those people for your article-operate meal.

Beans & Legumes

These are dietary powerhouses, but they are packed with fiber. And that can direct to major intestine upset, bloating and cramping because they are really hard to digest. Though peanut butter is a legume, the quantity you’ll eat pre-operate on prime of a little something else is not ample to wreck your gut.

Large Fiber Greens

Equivalent to beans and legumes, you want to stay clear of higher-fiber foods (specifically veggies) that will not digest quickly. Issues like broccoli and cauliflower are a recipe for a disaster pre-run.

Large Fiber Fruits

Although fruit can be a Great pre-operate selection considering the fact that it is loaded with carbs and all-natural sugar, adhere to kinds that are less difficult to digest (like bananas). Substantial fiber fruit like pears and apples may possibly give you a fast excursion to the toilet mid-operate rather than a fast burst of energy.

Spicy Foodstuff

Spicy foods can lead to acid reflux and heartburn when functioning. Really hard pass.

Protein Bars

Aside from having a lot more protein than carbs (which we talked about staying away from!), several protein bars are loaded with sugar and/or substances. You’re better off sticking to serious food stuff!


Espresso isn’t a meals, but I required to phone it out because I get requested about drinking espresso ahead of a operate a Whole lot. For most people, drinking coffee is not a great choice considering the fact that it can induce acid reflux, or even worse, a serious will need for a rest room mid-run. But for other individuals (myself included), a single cup of espresso is valuable pre run to assistance get factors shifting in the restroom (ahem) and it gives a very little burst of power. On the other hand, if you usually consume coffee before, you will not get that burst of vitality given that your overall body is applied to it. (I utilized to have a severe coffee addiction!) So you may perhaps want to conserve coffee for large workout times. But once again, espresso is anything you need to experiment with in coaching and see how you tolerate it since most men and women really do not do nicely with it ahead of a training!

Don’t forget that the Finest meals right before a operate is the just one that works very best for you! Be guaranteed to experiment with a few distinctive alternatives so when you are lacing up the early morning of a big race, you know your fuel is 1 issue you never have to have to worry about!

But really don’t try out all the alternatives on one particular day. 😉 This does seem like a wonderful runner’s charcuterie board although, does not it?

Foods to Avoid Before a Run

And if you just cannot appear to find everything that is effective with out wrecking your gut, seek out out professional medical suggestions. It is achievable you have a foods allergy or sensitivity or other digestive problems that want to be tackled.

Store my operating need to-haves

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