... Or at least the perfect marathon breakfast for FFF nutritionist Lisa.
That last meal before the big race… Hopefully, you wake up hungry because your pre-race fuel can determine how you feel during the run itself.
You can find loads of information online about what to eat, the amount of carbs and protein you should get and everything in between. My advice: Everyone is different and enjoys different things. Try out different things, snacks and meals during your training and just stick with the foods that work for you. We're coming in pretty close now, so we're hoping you've practised this before now if London is your goals race.
We suggest you have your breakfast 2 hours before the start of the race (3 hours if you know you’re a slow digester). Take your time to eat and chew well. This will help your body to digest everything in time and ensure you don’t feel bloated at the start.
These 2 breakfasts are my favourite pre-run breakfasts:
Toast with peanut butter and banana
It doesn’t take long to prepare and it tastes so damn good! The toast and banana will provide you with the carbs you need. Bananas are low in fibre so easy to digest. butter will give you some extra protein and help you feel full for a longer period of time.
Oatmeal porridge with almond milk and a berry compote
Oats are a healthy source of carbohydrates and often very filling. The berry compote will give you an extra boost of fast-acting sugar and they contain loads of antioxidants. Almond milk is for many easier to digest than cow’s milk as it doesn't contain lactose.
And what to drink?
Coffee! I always crave coffee first thing in the morning and also before a race.
It’s often claimed that coffee will dehydrate you, but studies have shown this is a false claim. Coffee is a mild diuretic, meaning that it makes you produce more urine, but it doesn’t affect water replacement in the body.
Many studies have shown the benefits of caffeine intake before a race. Caffeine can enhance performance and endurance, and therefore can make you run faster and it reduces the onset of tiredness. It also gives you a good mood boost which can help you to run better.
It’s important to note caffeine can also have a laxative effect, so it’s not ideal for everyone. Test coffee out during your training and definitely don’t try it out for the first time on race day.
Looking for something delicious to whip up that evening, to combine with a cosy evening spent on the sofa? Why not try our Sri Lankan Beetroot Dumplings? Packed with plenty of carbs to give back to those tired muscles, plus a kick of beetroot which has been proven to aid recovery due to the nitrates it contains. These nitrates contain anti-inflammatory properties which have been known to reduce muscle soreness.