Best foods to eat before a marathon : running, gym or workouts

Today we are going to see foods to eat before the marathon. Food is one of the fundamental aspect responsible to for your physical stamina. Hence a good diet plan is must to kickstart your marathon or workout

Here we are going to see what are the best foods to eat a week before a marathon, a really very demanding test for your body, to forget about taking care of what you eat in the previous days (and weeks)

You have struggled in difficult workouts, you have overcome those endless long runs, you have reached the week of the test without any serious injury, and now all that remains to be done is to make sure you do not spoil it.

This is where our brain plays with us and we become obsessed with small details. But there are only a few things that runners need to be prepared for in the marathon week, and one of the biggest is that the fuel for the race is the right one. The most common question I receive from beginner and veteran marathoners is: What do I eat the week before a marathon?


7 days of diet schedule before the marathon race

It is a great question and the diet of the runners in the week before a marathon is a very important part of the success on the day of the race.

Since I have explained how to practice your marathon nutrition strategy in a previous article, today I will cover an ideal eating plan for runners before your marathon, starting at 5 days of the race so you can follow our advice to start planning the foods you are going to eat before your marathon.

This article will teach you exactly what you should eat during the week before the marathon race and the next morning.

best foods to eat a week before a marathon

The Golden rule, never try anything new on race day

In addition to clothing, rhythm, and training, this rule also applies to your nutrition strategy in the five days prior to the race.

Remember it well, you should not experiment with new foods or venture too far from your normal diet. It’s easy to get nervous in the last days of the race and be persuaded by a new product that a friend recommends or something you see at the race show.

However, if you haven’t tried it before, especially at a marathon pace or during a long run, don’t let yourself be tempted. There are no miraculous products, but some that can spoil many months of training.

It is also important that you experiment with the types, quantity and time of the food you eat before running. Some runners have very weak stomachs and need up to three hours to digest food before they can run comfortably. Other runners can eat after an hour of a hard race without adverse side effects.

It is important to find out what type of runner you are during training and consider this information when planning the race in the morning.

The last two long runs or difficult-to-train runs should be similar to the test conditions, a simulation. Try to wear the clothes that you think you are going to wear on race day, shoes, socks, and everything you can think of.

Follow the script perfectly, eat the same food you are planning before the race the night before the race and when you wake up in the morning, eat the same breakfast you planned to eat.

This will give you time to change things before race day if you find that it doesn’t work for you.

5 days before the marathon best foods to eat

Start increasing your total carbohydrate intake by adding more pasta and starches (low glycemic foods) in the diet throughout the week.

The old idea of ​​depleting carbohydrate stores the week before the race and consuming carbohydrates in recent days in an attempt to trick your body into compensating and storing more fuel DOES NOT WORK.

It is enough to make sure you consume a higher percentage of total daily calories as carbohydrates.

Remember, you are not running as much as you have been, so eating too much more than normal will make you feel bloated and lethargic.

At this point in the nutritional cycle, relax and don’t overdo it.

Examples: sweet potatoes or sweet potatoes, pasta, baked potatoes, brown rice, sandwiches, toasted peanut butter, whole grain quinoa, oatmeal

2 days before the race best foods to eat


Your last great meal should be two nights before the race . It will give your body enough time to digest anything you eat so you don’t feel bloated on the morning of the race. I have seen too many people eat pasta the night before the race, but the next day I have seen too many people crammed with pasta to get to the stuffed and lethargic start line.

Have you ever tried to run the morning after Christmas Eve? If you have done it, you know the feeling of swelling that I am talking about, and if you have not done so, I do not recommend that you do a difficult workout.

Example: The favorite for the vast majority of people is pasta , but other options include rice, potatoes and pizza.


Foods to eat  1 day before the marathon


Eat balanced , normal meals as you normally would on any training day.
Be sure to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, especially electrolytic fluids such as Gatorade or use electrolyte tablets such as Nuun.

It helps a lot to carry a bottle of water by hand throughout the day to remember to drink. Main meals should remain in the form of foods with a low to medium glycemic index . Ideally, do not be too active the day before the race, so that you feel satisfied quickly. Okay, you shouldn’t try to dissect.

The good options are: Sweet sweet potatoes, pasta, roasted potatoes, white rice, sponge cake or toast with banana


Foods to eat 18 hours before  marathon

Start eating small meals every 2-3 hours, but after lunch, forget about red meat, fried foods, dairy products, fats, nuts and the like.

You should only consume light and digestible foods such as energy bars, bread and small sandwiches. Keep up with good hydration based on mineral water and electrolytic drinks and avoid salty and fiber-rich foods.

Examples include energy bars, bread, cereals, and small sandwiches.


Foods to eat 4 hours before the marathon

The big day arrived, so it’s early to get up , maybe more than usual, with more than enough time before the race to have a small breakfast with enough time to start digesting before the race starts.

If you need 3 hours to eat a small meal before running, then you need to get up at least three hours before the race to have a light breakfast, and continue with good hydration, drink in small, regular amounts . Water at room temperature is absorbed faster than hot or cold water.

Many runners will take a bar or energy gel just before taking the exit, I only recommend this if you are accustomed and if you feel and little weak, perhaps with the nerves you have not had breakfast well.

Basically, energy gels are mostly simple sugars and you will consume another 2 or 3 gels before the end of the race. Even for the sweet tooth, this is a lot of sugar.

My favorite breakfast – oatmeal with banana and coffee. Other options include toast with peanut butter or toast with honey and dry cereal.

At this point, you have to be very clear about what are the foods to eat before a marathon

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