Top 10 Must-Have Foods for Runners
The trail can take a lot out of you, and you can’t expect what’s in your day pack to sustain you. Runners need a constant supply of nutrients to keep them moving and ready for the trail, treadmill or track. If you’re a runner your body will go through phases of growth, repair and recovery.
Support your body with the best possible source of all the nutrients with these 5 must-have foods for runners. They work well with just about everything and are delicious too!
Runners Diet Ideas:
1. Hemp Seeds. Your body needs all of the amino acids to build and maintain muscle mass. One of the best sources of all the 20 essential and non-essential aminos is hemp seeds! Just one handful of shelled seeds includes not only all of those proteins, but also omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids including gamma linoleic acid (GLA), along with both soluble and insoluble fiber. Add this crunchy and satisfying seed to salads, yogurt, cereal and more… you’ll love it.
2. Avocado. Runners need minerals (electrolytes) after a run to replenish lost sores of nutrients. But you don’t always have to reach for banana. If you need potassium and other minerals you can find them in an avocado. Blend up some guacamole and you can get about 700 mg of potassium in every cup of the fruit.
3. Yogurt. If you are a runner, you know that you aren’t going to be able to do anything on the trail if your stomach isn’t with you. Mix in a flavorless yogurt into your daily routine. You can make it into a dip, make it breakfast, or blend it into a smoothie or juice. The probiotics it contains support regular digestion, and a lighter feeling on your run.
4. Berries. There is a powerful compound found in dark colored fruits called anthocyanins. This antioxidant provides powerful recovery support after an intense workout and you can find it in foods like: blueberries, blackberries, grapes, plums, raspberries, cherries, and cranberries. This compound also provides anti-inflammatory support. Ideal snacks for hard runners.
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5. Cilantro. Also known as Mexican coriander, cilantro is most traditionally found in Mexican cuisine but can also be found in summer food and beverage recipes. You can always count on this herb to add a fresh flavor to a main dish, salad or smoothie. What a refreshing way to support the health of blood vessels and for cleansing of heavy metals. Definitely this summers #1 MUST-HAVE!
6. Oatmeal. This is an old-fashioned kitchen staple and it’s as good today as ever! Add the breakfast classic to your menu for a slow release of carbohydrates that sustains your energy level for yours. Its not just good for breakfast either… it’s a great base for breads, cookies, and energy bars.
7. Honey. Sometimes long runs require more than what you’ve got store din the gas tank. What I’m saying is that there are times that you need a burst of energy – and a BIG one. Reach for a honey packet! It contains a blend of glucose and fructose to give you a swift kick in the you-know-what when you need it!
8. Lemons. A squeeze of this tart citrus fruit provides 100% of your need for daily Vitamin C- a nutrient needed for strong and healthy joints. When you drink lemon water in the morning you’ll also get a metabolic boost of energy that you can take along with your running shoes.
9. Grass Fed Beef. There is a nutrient found in grass fed beef you can’t find many other places. It’s called Conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA and its known to support a healthy cardiovascular system along with the immune system. Also a well known fat-burner and popular with those who work on their body composition.
10. Spinach. This leafy green vegetable is rich in a mineral called iron that is responsible for the production of red blood cells. Essential to the delivery of oxygen and other vital nutrients to all organs and body systems, iron is an ideal food for runners. It also contains energy-producing B vitamins including folate, thiamin, riboflavin, and B6.
Runners need calories – but nor from just anywhere! Add these 10 foods for runners to your menu today! Also be sure to read our piece on healthy summer snack foods too!!