Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Nutrition on the Run

First, thank you so much for all the words of encouragement yesterday. I know a lot of you understand exactly how I'm feeling, and I really appreciate your kind words of support.

Second, did you watch the Boston Marathon yesterday?! I listened to/watched the life feed online and was totally absorbed by it in the last few miles of the women's race. What a finish!! Desiree Davila was so close to being the first American winner since 1985. She did an incredible job, as did Kara and Ryan. I had a meeting at noon and didn't see the men's elite race finish, but I imagine that was a nail biter too! Great day for running!

So, as I mentioned last week, the NYRR YPC hosted a great event, Nutrition on the Run. The funny and endearing Lauren Slayton, owner of Foodtrainers, located here in the city, was the featured speaker of the night!

We had a great turnout for the night (a little over 70 women) and everyone seemed genuinely interested and happy with the program. As a committee member, I couldn't have been more thrilled with how it all turned out.

Lauren had planned a program titled "Spring Training Table Foods" that focused on healthy foods for athletes, specific for the Springtime. She stressed that while what we eat pre-, during, and post-run is very important, what we eat all week long is just as important and shouldn't be overlooked.

Lauren's Top 10 Spring Training Table Foods
1. Amazonian Jungle Peanuts - I'd never heard of these, but they contain all 8 essential amino acids, are sustainable products from the rainforest, free of allergy causing aflatoxins found in conventional peanuts and a great source of calcium, iron, oleic acid and vitamin e. Lauren also mentioned they're great as a recovery food.

2. Buckwheat/Soba Noodles: also known as kasha. Interesting fact: buckwheat isn't a wheat, but rather a relative of rhubarb. I would never have thought! Because it's not a wheat, it works in gluten free diets. While a 1/4c serving has about 150 calories, a daily serving has been shown to help lower cholesterol and blood pressure.

3. Cherries: aside from being delicious, research has shown that cherries are a natural anti-inflammatory. The antioxidants, anthocyanins, are what helps fight muscle soreness and also help ward off arthritis. Pour an ounce or so of tart cherry juice in some seltzer water and enjoy after your workout.

Cherry orchard in Northern Michigan
4. Tumeric & Ginger: I've known ginger is a great anti-inflammatory, but didn't know about tumeric. It can be grated fresh or used as a powdered spice and added to just about anything. Tumeric is apparently as effective as Advil but without any side effects. There is thought, as well, that it can help ward off Alzheimer's.
5. Dates: I love dates but had no idea how great they are for me! They are great for a pre-run snack because they provide a quick boost of energy through the release of glucose. Dates are high in potassium and non-heme iron (the plant kind). Traditionally they've been used to break fasts because they can help reduce over eating.

6. Peas: yes, peas might seem boring, but there are actually health benefits to them. They contain saponins, phytonutrients that provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. They also provide energy and stabilize blood sugar. I never knew they're a good source of omega-3's and vitamin c.

7. Lentils: turns out, these little things are one of the best vegetarian sources of iron and are high in folate and potassium. High in fiber and protein like beans, but easier for some people to digest. I've been a fan of lentils, but now I plan on eating more of them. They're also pretty fast to cook, which is always good!

8. Sardines/jarred tuna: while Lauren admitted she's not a fan of the taste of sardines, she is a fan of their health benefits. Both are high in omega-3's and anti-inflammatory properties. They're also easy to add to salads for a healthy meal; just don't add a creamy sauce to create a tuna salad cause that will give you more calories and fat than you need!

9. Coconut water: ever since I found Vita Coco, I've been a huge fan of coconut water. Thankfully it's good for us, too! Coconut water is from the inside of young, green coconuts and is nothing like coconut milk, except for the fact that they're both liquids! It's the ultimate sports drink as it's vitamin and electrolyte rich. But, it has very low sodium, so it's not necessarily the best to drink on the run since it won't replace sodium loss, so it's great for pre- or post-run. I think it's so refreshing after a hard workout! It is also higher in potassium than bananas and potatoes.

10. Chia/Maca: if you've read "Born to Run" or any of my breakfast recipes, you've heard about chia. It's high in fiber, calcium, iron, and zinc and helps relieve joint pain. It's great pre-run (or any time) and can be added to things like yogurt, smoothies, oatmeal, salads, and more. It's also a natural appetite suppressant. Maca is sold in powdered form and can also be added to yogurt, smoothies, oatmeal, and more. It's a non-stimulant form of energy and also great post-run.

So, I know this is a long post, but just a few other quick tips from the night:
  • liquids and yogurts are easiest to digest, so they're great post-run, or when you don't have a lot of time to digest your food pre-run
  • when drinking water/sports drink on the run, gulp it, don't sip. Gulping helps it move through the digestive system faster reducing the chance of cramping.
  • know how many carbs you need on the run per hour: divide your weight by 4.
  • bananas, dates and papaya are good sources of quick energy
  • if you choose to eat real food on the run, go for low fat & low protein sources that'll digest easily
  • the amount of food you eat pre-run directly relates to the length of the run. Pre-run fuel is most important when going out for an hour or more.
  • it's super important to eat something shortly after a run, but it doesn't have to be a huge meal
  • everyone is different so it's really important to know what works best for you before race day. Practice the types of fuel and when you fuel to be most confident when you hit the start line!
Because of some generous donations, we were able to give samples to attendees of products Lauren likes

coromega and eboost

Vita Coco and Living Fuel
 It was a fun evening with lots of great tips!

Check out the Foodtrainers site and blog for more tips.
  • have you ever seen a sports nutritionist?
  • what food(s) makes you think Spring?

Today's workout -
8min arm bike
200 various crunches
25 reverse hanging crunches
3x25sec superman
2x10 laying alternate side arm/leg lifts
60 laying leg lifts, each side
3x12 lat pull down
100 arm circles
foam roller


Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner said...

What a great night with lots of info. Thanks for sharing!
I've just tried coconut water for the first time a few days ago and LOVED it.

stephchows said...

So much great advice and interesting facts! Thanks :)

Jenn said...

Great post! I love all the nutrition info-so interesting to me! Thankyou

The marathon was simply AWESOME! I was so inspired after yesterday and can't wait to go back!!!

Anonymous said...

Lisa - so sorry to hear about your injury! All I can say is that you will come back, and you'll come back even stronger than before. Take care of that leg, lady.

Great post - I love reading and researching information like this :)

Anonymous said...

First, wanted to say how sorry I am to hear about your injury! Taking time off running is definitely hard, no less with upcoming races. Having had 2 stress fractures back-to-back, I know how frustrating it is. But, your body needs the rest and this can be a great time to focus your attentions and time on the other areas in your life that you wouldn't normally have much time for due to running, like catching up on sleep, taking on new tasks at work, spending more time with friends, cooking more meals at home, learning a new hobby, reading more books, etc.! View it as a blessing in disguise, and your body will be healed and mentally refreshed when you're able to get back out there.

And, thanks again for setting up the YPC nutrition talk! I had a great time.

Copychic said...

Great post! I just picked up a bag of lentils at the store this week so it's great to see that idea reinforced. Thanks so much for sharing all this info :)

Danielle said...

Fantastic post! Very informative, and I appreciate that all the foods didn't revolve around animal products.

I would also like to reiterate all the condolences from other readers about your injury- such a bummer. It sounds like you're dealing with it with an extraordinary amount of grace and perseverance- best of luck to you as your train your body to heal and be even stronger than before!

Penny said...

Whoa girl. Thanks for all that information. I have been looking at the chia seeds. I have been afraid to buy them thinking I might not like them. BUt after reading youR post I will be get some.

Karen said...

Sounds like an awesome evening! Great tips, thanks! :0)

JayaBidkar said...

Thanks Lisa for the great tips. I will be running the Pittsburgh marathon this year and Lentils are my best friend currently :) trying to load up on protein. I will keep visiting.

Lisa said...

Recently I have
stumbled upon a curious article providing the analysis, conducted by nutrition
scientists, on which elements are essential for keeping great shape and how
they work - http://bit.ly/Qh9G8S.
They also write a lot about pre-workout and post-workout nutrition. Very
interesting information for all athletes.

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