Back in June the Vega Team took Tough Mudder by storm — but not without a kick-butt nutrition strategy handed down from one of our very own in-house holistic nutritionists, Emma Cutfield. If you’re not familiar with Emma yet, she’s a regular contributor to Vega News (when she’s not flying off somewhere in North America to teach the principles behind Vega’s great nutritional products, that is). Vega’s Product Education Manager, Emma is wise in the ways of strategic race-day nutrition, based on the fact that she’s also an accomplished runner, yogi, and now Tough Mudder herself.
Most of us are not registered holistic nutritionists or dieticians — as such, we tend to digest nutrition tips better when they’re fed in simple bite-size chunks (pun intended). So for all of us that are yet to earn nutritional guru status, here are 5 key take aways from Emma’s race-day nutrition advice:
Top 5 Race-day Nutrition Tips for Runners
- The week before your event, work on fine-tuning your digestion by stocking up on your key nutrient reserves. If you are worried that you haven’t been as committed to your race-day nutrition the week before, do what you can in the remaining 24 hours before your start time, be diligent about what you eat, and when you eat it.
- Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate! The week before race-day it is important to do what Emma refers to as “hyper-hydrating.” Hydrating with coconut water or a supplement like Vega Sport Electrolyte Hydrator is recommended to keep the ideal water balance in your cells, and helps you avoid feeling dehydrated on race-day — not to mention a plethora of badly-timed bathroom trips when you’re trying to keep a pace! Emma recommends drinking enough water to equal at least half your body weight in ounces.
- Carb-loading is a popular practice among distance runners, and your second-to-last meal before your race-day is the time to do it. When it comes to lunch time the day before your race — go all out. The day before Tough Mudder we ate sushi and pasta. This way your body has plenty of time to digest and assimilate. As Emma says “This is one time when I advocate simple carbs, which require less breakdown to convert to sugars in the body.”
- Simple carbs are also recommended again on the morning of your race — you should plan to eat 60 to 90 minutes before your race begins. Emma suggested a snack of Raspberry Vega Sport Endurance Gel on your favourite toast! Weird, yet phenomenally effective!
- Get your last turbo-boost of fuel in before you leave the starting line with Vega Sport Pre-Workout Energizer. Simply mix one scoop or single package of Pre-workout Energizer in 2 ounces of water, shake it up and shoot it back. You’ll get all the benefits of this amazing energy supplement without a tummy full of fluid.