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Thread: Pre-Race Nutrition page

  1. #1
    LA's Avatar
    LA
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    Hello All!

    I will be running my first half-marathon this weekend as a primal eater and wanted advice on my pre-race meals.


    Previously, while on the zone diet, I would start slowly increasing my carbohydrate intake 36 to 48 hours before an event (triathlon or road race) by adding small amounts of pasta, bananas and sweet potatoes to my diet. Also, I was eating oatmeal every morning for breakfast, which I have now eliminated from my diet.


    So, I am curious what would be a primal way to prepare for my race. I am worried that if I eat the way I used to before races, I might have some stomach problems...and I do NOT want to have to take a bio break in the middle of a race. Should I 'fat load'?


    Any advice is welcome...I am not trying to win this thing, but I do want to make sure I am properly fed before the race. Thanks in advance...


  2. #2
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    If you are peaking and resting, then you are probably working out less. You might add a few extra carbs from sweet potatoes in the coming days. We usually use potatoes and rice (I know rice is a primal no-no) since we've cut out wheat (and generally oats).


    For race morning, what have you been doing for training? If it has worked in training, it should work on race morning. Maybe a banana? Applesauce w/ protein powder and almond butter is a great snack that seems to work well for me before workouts. I can handle applesauce, but not an apple though.


  3. #3
    VanillaSpice's Avatar
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    Considerations for your race planning: expected finish time, how well trained you are, expected intensity of racing.


    I'm still making the change-over to primal and raced an HM Sunday. I used dessert Saturday night for carbs--big banana,yogurt, almond meal. 2-3 hrs prerace--banana, sweet potato, 1T cashew butter. In race-homemade gels (not primal). Recovery--milk, banana, blueberry, protein powder smoothie. I'm a long course triathlete, and the HM distance for me is not out of the ordinary. So YMMV in comparison.


    The way I see it, as an endurance athlete I probably will never make the switch to fully primal. I will do the best I can to balance primal with training. I can say that in just the past week of eating along the lines of PB I'm already feeling fantastic. Previously I was eating 60-70% of my calories from carbs! Now I'm down to about 40%. No more afternoon slump or mid-morning cravings.


  4. #4
    Geoff's Avatar
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    Mark had a blog piece for endurance athletes that you might find enlightening:


    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-athlete-compromises/


    Now my $0.02 (probably worth less than half of that to the rest of you): Contrary to CW, I did not carbo load before my last few marathons and HMs. Often my only food before the race would be a cup of black coffee though a few times I had some cold ZC meatballs. During the event I go with a sports beverage since I gels don't sit well with me. The night before was typically a salad and some fruit with, maybe, a light vegetable soup.


    VanillaSpice is right on point though: nutritional prep is personal to your body, training, and race strategy.


    Remember to always follow the golden rule: Never do anything on race day that you haven't first tried in training. I wouldn't try to change things radically on the eve of your HM.


  5. #5
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    I'm just making switch to Primal. I did my second Ironman 6 weeks ago, took 4 weeks off bike, run, and swim. Started eating Primal 2.5 weeks ago and now am racing cyclocross most weekend. If you don't know what cyclocross is think steeplechase on bikes with me getting off my bike and jumping over the barriers carrying my bike or running up steep hills .Races are 30-45 minutes long and pretty intense zone 4/5.


    First weekend Primal cross race went fine. I ate a granola bar hour before my race and took a gel 10' before the race as I was sure my blood glucose level was low. After race I had chocolate milk as a recovery drink.


    I did the same thing a week later, but after I crossed the finish like I was shaking and in a bad spot. My husband and teammates were concerned about me. I had same recovery drink then ate a lot of fruit banana, cantaloupe, and grapes as I was racing again the next day. Sunday morning I had eggs and bacon for breakfast and added in wild rice with butter. Had Luna bar hour before race and gel 10' before start and I felt much better during and after the race. I had recovery drink afterwards. I was less concerned about recovery as I won't be racing for another week.


    I am feeling a little off training now on bike and run. I'm focusing on easy running and cycling to train. I feel a bit dizzy or lightheaded at times.


  6. #6
    Get Primal's Avatar
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    Eggs. If you don't have access or time to cook them, bring hard boiled. I've done this before marathons and ultras with no issues whatsoever...of course the others are correct and you should eat whatever you know won't cause problems. That's more important than the macronutrients you ingest a couple hours before the race.


  7. #7
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    I eat a sweet potato dish the day before, and day of maybe a banana with PB, or oatmeal if going long and I am up early enough.


  8. #8
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    If you want a few extra carbs on race morning, try eating dried fruit. You can easily carry it with you during the race, too. I am just now trying to get back into running and training for a marathon after almost a year off to focus on getting Primal, which has been very successful for me.

    Now that I am running again, I have found that it just plain stinks to run without carbs. It's no fun. So the last two training runs I did I ate a miniature box of raisins before the run (it's only about 11g carbs) and that has made a huge difference.

    Also, I am experimenting with cycling carbs starting on Friday night and ending on Saturday night so that my long weekend runs are easier (I am doing back to back long runs because I am doing the Goofy Challenge, which is a HM on Saturday and a full mary on Sunday).

    Bottom line: you can get extra carbs with fruit and veggies, which is much better for you than getting them through grains.

    Hope you have a great race!


  9. #9
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    also check out the Paleo DIet for Athletes...its similar to Primal but with good suggestions for pre/during/post race.


    I eat primal all the time excpet before/during/after runs.


  10. #10
    sunnyhills1974's Avatar
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    Primal Blueprint Expert Certification


    I just began this Paleo/primal diet, and being a runner, cyclist, etc...I am finding NO energy.

    Legs heavy, still doing my runs, but not feeling up to par. About how long will this last?

    Or should I be adding in something?

    And dried fruit, is it allowed? or will it "undo" the diet principles?


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