Tonight I attended the Nutrition for Runners Seminar at the CoxHealth Meyer Center. Here are the highlights from David Dade’s presentation:
- Main Point Performance is directly related to nutrition.
- Training increases the heat your body produces thus increasing the need for nutrients.
- The right training diet provides energy at the right time in the right amount.
- Your diet should follow the 4:1, carbs to protein ratio:
- Carbs: 60–70%
- Protein: 15–25%
- Fat: Less than 25%
Carbs: We can only store 1600–2100 calories in glycogen stores (carbs breakdown to glucose which are stored as glycogen). There is no limit to how much energy we can store in fat. We get our running energy from our muscle glycogen. Training increases our glycogen stores and teaches our bodies to store it efficiently.
Protein: Used for muscle repair. Eating a lot of protein will not make you bulk up.
Fat: Don’t be afraid of it.
Pre-competition / Event Day
- Practice your nutrition during your training. Don’t try anything new near the event.
- Eat complex carbs and lean meats.
- If you have a nervous stomach, drink liquids like chocolate milk, Ensure, and Boost.
- Drink 16–20 oz. 2–3 hours before the event.
- Drink 7–10 oz. 10–20 minutes before the race.
During the Event
- Again, practice your nutrition before the event.
- Ingest 120–240 calories/hour
- Start replenishing as soon as the event starts.
- Ingest sodium with liquids.
- Don’t only rely on water.
- Replace energy, fluids, and electrolytes.
- Eat within 30 minutes of finishing.
- Eat again in 2 hours.
- It takes 20–24 hours to replace glycogen and the first few hours after your run are the most important
Those are the highlights, and the seminar further convinces me that runners are awesome. We have no dignity whatsoever—I mean what other group of people can have such a candid discussion about “runner’s trots” and bowel movements?
“Health food makes me sick.” — Calvin Trillin