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Nutrition protocol for running

Nutrition plays a crucial role in running performance and recovery. When we start to talk about nutrition protocol for runners here are some bullet points we need to consider:

1. Hydration: Proper hydration is essential for optimal performance. Drink water throughout the day and during your runs. Aim to drink about 8-10 ounces of water every 15-20 minutes during exercise, and adjust based on weather conditions and sweat rate.

2. Pre-run Nutrition:

- Carbohydrates: Consume a meal rich in carbohydrates 2-3 hours before your run. This provides energy and helps top off glycogen stores. Opt for easily digestible carbs such as oatmeal, whole grain toast, or a banana.

- Hydration: Drink about 16-20 ounces of water 2-3 hours before your run to ensure proper hydration.

3. During Run Nutrition:

- Hydration: Drink water or a sports drink during longer runs (over an hour) to replenish fluids and electrolytes lost through sweat.

- Carbohydrates: For runs lasting longer than 60-90 minutes, consider consuming easily digestible carbohydrates in the form of gels, chews, or sports drinks to maintain energy levels.

4. Post-run Nutrition:

- Protein and Carbohydrates: Consume a post-run meal or snack containing both carbohydrates and protein within 30-60 minutes after your run. This helps replenish glycogen stores and aids in muscle recovery. Good options include a protein smoothie with fruit, yogurt, and protein powder, or a turkey sandwich on whole grain bread.

- Hydration: Drink plenty of fluids to rehydrate after your run. Water or a sports drink can help replenish electrolytes lost through sweat.

- Electrolytes: If you sweat heavily during your run or it was particularly long, consider consuming foods or drinks containing electrolytes to restore balance.

5. Overall Diet:

- Balanced Diet: Maintain a balanced diet rich in whole foods such as fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats to support overall health and performance.

- Fuelling Needs: Pay attention to your individual energy needs and adjust your calorie intake accordingly, especially during periods of heavy training.

- Supplements: While a balanced diet should provide most of your nutritional needs, some runners may benefit from supplements such as iron, vitamin D, or omega-3 fatty acids. Consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplements.

6. Special Considerations:

- Long Runs and Races: Experiment with different nutrition strategies during your long training runs to find what works best for you on race day.

- Gastrointestinal Issues: Some runners may experience gastrointestinal discomfort during runs. Experiment with different foods and timing to minimize issues.

- Individual Needs: Everyone's nutritional needs are unique, so it's essential to experiment and find what works best for you through trial and error.

Always remember that consistency is key, and what works for one runner may not work for another. It's essential to listen to your body and adjust your nutrition plan accordingly to optimize performance and recovery.

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