Nutrition for Running: Five Important Things Beginners Should Know About

During a workout, you are wasting your energy. To recover after a workout and get positive results you should find ways to restore a load of energy to start another day or activity. A very popular way of workout is running. Both professional runners and amateurs should consider different factors to succeed.

One of the most important concepts every runner should know is Nutrition. It is always important to have a balanced diet, however, sometimes it is difficult to combine correctly different meals to get sufficient vitamins and minerals to take care of our body and brain. Our mental health is as important as our physical health. And similar to our body our brain also lacks nutrients.

Here you can find five things every runner should know about Nutrition:

1.  Hydration

There are three stages of workout hydration:

  • Pre-hydration
  • Maintenance
  • Post-exercise hydration

Two hours before you start running it is essential to drink around 1l of water. You should consider if it would be a short or long run to know if you need to take water with you or not. It is highly recommended to drink water during the exercise as well. Every 20 minutes stop for a second and drink some water.

Do not forget about post-exercise hydration. You should calculate the amount of fat burnt during the cross and drink from 200ml to 1 l of water.

Drinking lots of water also helps with the recovery, your muscles lose their elasticity because of the tension. Water helps them stay moisturized and flexible.

There are plenty of sports drinks that can help you to stay hydrated as well. These drinks contain minerals that can be beneficial for your health.

Although when drinking sports drinks keep in mind to choose ones that are low in carbohydrates. A high amount of carbohydrates can negatively affect your stomach. Take into account that some isotonic drinks have higher amounts of caffeine which is first of all addictive and, secondly, can be high in calories. If we aim to lose weight, lots of calories might be an obstacle to achieve our goal.

2.  Diet Quality

It is very fashionable to follow a balanced diet, a Mediterranean diet, or a diversified diet. Yet, many doubts arise: Which is the correct one?

It depends on a person, on the activity you do, and on the tastes you have. The same diet could be appropriate for you and dangerous for another one. You can get Nutrition info by consulting reliable resources or seeing a professional.

Some food every runner should use as a part of a diet is:


  • Oatmeal breakfast – it is rich in carbs and you can go running afterward with a full charge of energy.
  • Broccoli – High concentration of vitamin C makes this vegetable very attractive. It can help to reduce sore muscles.
  • Yogurt – A plain yogurt is rich in carbohydrates and proteins. It is advisable to eat one after running to accelerate the recovery process.
  • Dark chocolate – Dark chocolate helps to reduce cholesterol levels and control blood pressure. It is a combination of pleasure and usefulness.
  • Potatoes – This vegetable is rich in vitamin A and potassium. It is an essential food to improve the immune system and strengthen bones.
  • Overall, runners’ diets should vary and include different components rich in different vitamins.

3.  Eating before a workout

If you are going to start a workout you should eat before. Nevertheless, the closer your eating time to the workout, the lower it should be in fats.

30-60 minutes before the workout you can eat food high in carbohydrates, low in fat. Balanced protein-containing food is also recommendable.

If you start a workout without eating anything, your levels of stamina could be reduced. Stamina is responsible for our concentration and energy boosts. You may also feel weak, nauseated, and be in a bad mood.

An example of a great workout snack is an egg. It is a nice option to eat one hour before the workout. However, a hard-boiled egg could cause digestion issues. Opt for soft-boiled eggs.

4.  Don’t Skimp on Protein

Protein is a requirement for our body. Proteins are one of three macronutrients our body needs for correct metabolism. Sometimes, our goals make us change our diet and reduce some nutrients. Nevertheless, you should not skimp on protein. Reducing noticeably the number of proteins you can have muscle wasting or weak bones. Lack of protein can also cause hair loss or skin breakdown.

When we want to lose weight we reduce some nutrients that our body receives. The effect can be fast, even though we have to bear in mind that losing weight still does not mean being healthy. Thus before changing something in our nutrition we must know how to combine other nutrients well to compensate for the lack of one or another.

5.  Carb and Fat

We talked about one of 3 major nutrients that are essential for our body. The other 2 are carbohydrates and fats. There is confusion that carbs or fats make you fat. You gain more weight than you would like to from exceeding the kcal levels.

That is why you should not give up any nutrients, you just need to find a good combination. Nutritionists can advise you on how to combine correctly different types of food to get maximum profit for your body.

White rice, bread, pasta, and candies are high in carbs. Avocados, cheese, dark chocolate, fatty fish, and chia seeds are high in fat.


Our body needs all the nutrients to function well. Carbs and fats are sources of energy, proteins build our muscles, help with recovery. Thus, a correct nutrition routine can help achieve your goals. Stay hydrated, eat well, combine nutrients, and do not give up!