What to Eat Before a 5k/10k Run
Carb loading for a 5K race isn’t really necessary. When it comes to a 5K you will really just want to make sure you are doing these following steps when it comes to eating before your race:
Eat A Light Breakfast
For morning races, a light 200-300 calorie breakfast one to two hours before the race should hold you over well. Try to make sure that most of the calories are coming from whole, unprocessed carbs. Try to avoid too much fiber or fats due to the amount of time they take to digest. 10 grams of fiber/fat or less is best! Be sure to avoid spicy! Spicy foods or seasoning can upset your stomach and may cause heartburn during your race. Make sure that you try different meal choices during your training to see what works best with your body, so on the race day you will know exactly what to eat.
No need to starve yourself! If you are hungry right before your race, it is perfectly OK to have a small snack of 150-250 calories that settles the hunger, but not fill you up. Something like a banana, or energy bar would suffice. Try to choose something that is high in carbohydrates and low in fat. Make sure to drink 7-10 ounces of water or a sports drink to wash it down. Drinking will aid in quicker digestion, giving your body the quick burn nutrients you need to succeed!
Wash your pre-race meal down with plenty of water or your favorite sports drinks. 17-20 ounces of water before the race is about what you should consume. Then sipping water throughout the day and before the race is a good idea. Avoid drinking so much that you get sick once you start running. Stay hydrated but pace yourself.
If your race is later in the day or evening, be sure to keep all your meals very light. Breakfast and lunch meals will be very important in how you feel by the time the race starts. Again, avoid high fiber and fat. Granola with fruit, a bagel with egg, etc. are all good choices for breakfast if your race is late in the day.
Best of luck on your upcoming Virtual 5k or 10k! Let us know what you do to prepare for your race and as always we would love to hear and see the results on social media!