Race and Food
Everybody have his own recipe. But today, the coach present you 8 of his rules, to avoid indigestion during competition!
Before to start, let’s have an important point. Every stomach have is own answer regarding food and sport. This is the reason why this article will be more about protocole, process to set up and line of thought.
The 8 rules
1- Prepare a nutrition plan. When you write what you will eat, and when, you avoid a lot of stress and mistakes. Indeed, you will manage in an efficient way the quantity of the food that you need to have in your pocket, but also to avoid the pre-race stress. It also allow you to be more informed about the refueling area and race specificity.
2- Test your food. During your training,you must add a time to try the food that you chose to eat during your race. You will need to try this food during some intensities session, to be close enough to the race conditions. That will help you to see how your stomach manage this type of food, in an intense situation.
3- Not too much and nothing new. The first mistake with the food can be done before the race. During the pre-race breakfast! If you are not at home -in a hotel for example- you will not have your daily habits. It can be normal to want to try the hotel breakfast with this nice little croissant or chocolat cake. Unfortunately, this is not the moment to try something new! Stay on what you normally eat, and don’t eat too much. No need to do some extra reserves. Last advice regarding the breakfast: also try your pre race breakfast during your preparation. It will allow you to know more about your assimilation time, for a better organization the D-Day.
4- Running: privilege Energie Gel. With the impact of the run, your stomach can have some hard times. Gels are easier to take and assimilate. Every brand have its type of texture, so try different brand. From the puree texture to the liquid texture, each one has its tastes!
5- Cycling: eat what you want. The big advantage in cycling is that you can eat whatever you want. Still be careful to not fall when you eat! Regarding to this point, for our triathletes’ friends, it can be interesting to eat « solid » during the cycling part, and take the gels during the running part. It will avoid some nausea due to the texture and weariness of the gels.
6- Sugar and long effort. Let’s be honest, 90% of the energy bars on the market have a sweet taste. But, it’s important to notice for our long distance athletes (Ironman or ultra runners) that after 4hours of sugar, the body can have some strange reaction and be saturated. A salty stop on the refueling area can be a good option. You just need to be more imaginative to find salty food 😉
7- Drinks: electrolytes are your best friends. Drinks is also really important. And need to be planned. For the runners, on the marathon or half marathon, water can be enough but you need to be careful to don’t miss a refuel area. An electrolytes cure can still be good before the race to avoid cramps. For the long distance athlete, isotonic drinks are essential for the electrolytes. And other interesting point: if you can’t eat, drinks can bring you an energy supply.
8- Vary tastes and pleasures. Refuel need to be see as a good moment. Find some energy bars or gels that make you happy to eat. Take different tastes and type of products. Be careful, 2 weeks before the race, reduced your consommation of the selecting gels and bars, to avoid any weariness the D-Day.