There are so many ways that you can start training for a half marathion. Some people prefer to eat well and ensure they don’t exert too much effort beforehand. Others prefer to train hard with running 5km races and 10km races beforehand. As usual, with many food related activities and exercise, it comes down to something in the middle. It will largely depend on your own body. Healthy Food Reviews have long been a big promoter of getting to know your own body. Whether it is learning about a potential caffeine intolerance, or simply knowing what healthy stuff you can eat, Healthy Food Reviews can help you learn.
What to eat when training for a half marathon
Let’s start off by discussing what you should eat before a big run. Healthy Food Reviews often avoid a big meal the night before, and on the day of the race. Not everyone will do this as they believe they become fatigued and lack energy. On our healthy recipes page, you will find a few pasta dishes which may give you the boost you need. Pasta is not the only food that gives you energy though. There are plenty of carbohydrates that would be beneficial for you to consume before a run. In our experience though, you shouldn’t eat too close to the race or run, as stitches become problematic.
Foods that give you energy can be found in any superstore or local shop. Whilst pasta is an obvious one, some people prefer to consume foods like bananas. The potassium in bananas certainly helps with any muscle pains. If you have seen tennis players eating bananas during matches, you know they are helpful. With so much sports science around nowadays, you’re never far away from an expert being able to tell you what to eat. But remember, you know your body better than anyone else.
Drinking before and during a long run
Although we are talking about training for a half marathon here, your food and drink intake is important for any exercise. Exercise, particularly in the summer will cause you to feel dehydrated. When it’s hot, an intake of water and other forms of energy is essential. You certainly need to be getting those essential vitamins into your diet. Energy drinks like Red Bull and Lucozade contain elements that give you a boost of energy right before a run. However, they also contain lots of sugar and glucose which can cause them to feel heavy on your stomach. If you are exercising because of weight loss, you will probably want to stay away from these also.
So, if you can’t take on energy drinks, how should you hydrate before a race? Well, some people prefer to take caffeine on in the form of black coffee before a run. This could be good. However, once again it is all about timing and knowing your body. Nobody wants to drink caffeine too close to your race or you will end up needing to go to the toilet. You will also don’t want coffee or Red Bull swishing around in your belly. This can be uncomfortable.
Healthy Food Reviews have often talked about the importance of drinking too much coffee as it can cause symptoms of caffeine intolerance. Symptoms like bloating, headaches and nausea are not good feelings if you are running or training for a half marathon. Try to ease your way in with a black coffee or something similar. Imagine if you did all that training and then had to stop halfway through because you needed the toilet!
So, other than food and drink, what is the best course of action to train?
You need to find the right training plan for your long race. We learnt through our own experiences which ones were best. That doesn’t mean you should try them all, but you shouldn’t stick to just one. Of course, as a healthy food reviews blog, we would think that eating and running are more important. But the fitness aspect does come in handy and will certainly help others. Runners World provides great insight into which fitness plan you should try.
From our point of view, it was a case of try, try and try again. But in the lead up to the race, we certainly toned it down. Writing this blog after training and running a half marathon means we do have some experience. A little jog and run on Tuesday was a major catalyst, but before that, we did not do any exercise. You don’t want to overtrain and cause an injury.
Essentially, the fitness plan you choose will actually depend on what your goal is. Is it to record a PB or is it to lose weight? As an exercise enthusiast, weight loss may be your end goal. Training for a half marathon will certainly set you on your way. If your goal is to run a PB, then you might need to switch up your training methods. This is why there is not always just one training regime for everyone. Otherwise, we would all be doing it!
Know Your Own Body before training for a half marathon
Ultimately, the best training regime for you would be to learn more about your body. It is not just about throwing healthy stuff into your body. Healthy Food Reviews do like to promote the importance of healthy stuff like exercise and good food recipes, but it’s not all about that. In terms of fitness training, it could be as simple as just running when you feel like it. Run when you want to. There is no point in running if you do not feel like it, you need to be able to put the effort in. If running outdoors isn’t your thing, you can try alternatives. Exercising indoors also helps to ensure you increase your fitness. That way, the only run you have to do is the actual race!
Sometimes, the best way to train and increase your fitness is to remove things from your diet. Whether it is removing coffee from your diet to remove symptoms of caffeine intolerance as Healthy Food Reviews often advises, there are other foods you can remove. Healthy stuff like eating better and trying intolerance testing can help. Learn more about low-calorie diets and how they can help you to run half marathons in our blog.