Tuesday Topics: How do you fuel for your run?

This week, I am linking up with  Kookyrunner and Zenaida  for Tuesday Topics.

This is a new link-up. Kim and Zenaida took over the weekly link-up spot that was previously taken by the “Tuesdays on the Run”-link up, which ended in December. I am happy to see someone took up the torch.

Today we’re talking about how we fuel for a run.

I have to admit, most of my runs are run on an (almost) empty stomach. I usually have a glass of water before I work out in the morning and sometimes a string cheese. My main fuel comes post-run.

However, I always fuel before a race (or runs that are longer than 8 miles). I figure that it gives me an extra boost of energy to conquer the distance, but I don’t get very fancy. I usually have steel cut oatmeal before a race, sometimes it’s just a protein bar or a banana.

I am still very much a newbie to fueling during a run and I have been experimenting with different things: Honey Stinger waffles, ProBar Chews, and simple things like pretzels or gummy bears. I didn’t want to believe it, but it actually works and gives you a boost right away. I know lots of people swear by the gels, but I am just not a fan of the texture.

Post-run, I immediately re-hydrate with electrolyte and magnesium tablets. I also try to eat something within 30-45 minutes. On the weekends, I make scrambled eggs + veggies with toast, or pancakes or steel cut oats with fruit. During the week, when I have less time (or commute from the gym to work right away), I either have overnight oats ready to be heated at the office or sometimes I just reach for a Greek yogurt or a Perfect Bar to get in some protein.

What is your easy, go-to fuel for your run? I am always open for new ideas!

  1. That’s good you’re experimenting with different foods; see what works for you. I can’t imagine working out on an almost empty stomach though. haha


    1. I am just too lazy to eat at 5 in the morning (when I work out before work) ;)

  2. I’m glad to hear someone say they are a newbie when it comes to fuelling during the run/race. I am the same. I seem to hold up okay for 19 – 21 km distances with a good breakfast and then water during the run. But at my last Half Marathon I realised that I needed more fuel during. I was completely fatigued and out of sorts at the end, and needed gels and Coca Cola immediately, which seemed to do the trick. But my aim before my next Half will be to experiment a bit with fuel during the run.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Shathiso! I used to run my first few half marathons without fuel (just relying on water stops), but I’d definitely recommend you try out some fuel DURING the run… I was stubborn and didn’t want to believe it (also, I didn’t like the idea of eating while running), but it helps!

  3. Thanks so much for linking up with us this week!

    I agree that I prefer fasted cardio for my shorter runs. For me it ensures that I won’t have any stomach issues (hopefully) on the run!

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Kim, and hosting the Tuesday Topics!

  4. When I worked out before work, I always did it on an empty stomach, too. I was too pressed for time to have breakfast. But I didn’t run before work – I usually did some sort of strength training/cardio workout combination. When I was in run club, we did our long runs on Sat am and I definitely had to fuel before that. My go to has always been peanut butter toast and coffee. I didn’t eat during runs until we got to the really long ones like 15+ miles! Our club always had a water stop set up somewhere and they provided things like gummy bears so I usually relied on that. During races I used gels but I found one that had chia seeds in it that wasn’t so sweet like the usual ones you see at races. They aren’t my favorite but for marathons it was easy to carry 5-6 of them!

    1. I can’t do coffee BEFORE my workout…. LOL if you know what I mean.
      I know GU seems to be the easiest to ‘eat’ and carry during races, but I just can’t with the texture and some of them are so sweet!

  5. I like to stick with what I like and it doesn’t work for everyone! But I usually have toast and an egg before a long run, sometimes even a few pieces of toast! It depends on my distance. If I’m travelling then I’ll go with oatmeal and a banana because no matter where you go, you can usually find oatmeal! Before I start a race I may have a gel or some chews, a banana, sometimes even a raisin roll with honey (if it’s a marathon). On the long run I have gels usually, but less than I used to have as I have found I don’t need what “they” recommend. I’m usually drinking something with electrolytes as well. And afterwards… beer and pizza haha!

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Renée :) Toast and eggs would be something I could totally do before a run.

  6. I always make sure to have coffee before a run (in the morning). I cannot function without it.

    I also love overnight oats. I make a few jars on the weekend to have ready for the week. Fast, easy and delicious!

    Thanks for linking up with us!

  7. I almost always try to eat before I run, unless it’s a short run, like 3 miles or less. I fuel while running on runs longer than 7ish miles, usually, especially if they’re training runs for a half or a ten miler because it lets me experiment with new fuel. I’ve tried gummies and jelly beans, but I mostly stick to gels. They’re not all created equal, but I’ve found the Vanilla GUs agree with me and the Honey Stinger gels are always good because the texture of those is the best – it doesn’t leave my mouth feeling sticky or chalky like some.

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