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Nov 28

TriTip of the day: Carb Load Properly Before A Triathlon Or Marathon

Do you wonder what to eat before a big race?  Are you sitting there in the days before a marathon, ironman or half ironman wondering what goes in, and what should stay out?

This is actually a really deep area, but (thanks to a client for sending us this link) I wanted to touch on one aspect of it right now- proper carb loading.

Here is a carb loading study I was sent that I 100% agree with.

In short, here is what you should do:

  • The week of the race eat normally, except be sure to drink a lot of water.  Do remember as you taper that you are working out less, so you don’t have to eat as much either.
  • The day before the race focus on eating a LOT of easy to digest (and pass through) carbohydrates!
    • Yes: pasta, bread, rice.
    • No: butter, pizza with too much cheese, fibrous veggies.
    • Be sure to minimize fiber to reduce the odds of having to hit a portajohn mid-race!
  • Here are the key tricks to carb loading
    • Your target is 15 grams of carbohydrates per pound of bodyweight- this is a LOT.  Think >1 lb of pasta.
    • Focus on concentrated carb sources so your huge grammage does not overwhelm your system (maple syrup on your pancakes!)
    • Eliminate non-carb foods the day before the race so you are not overwhelmed by volume
    • Try to get your carbs in mostly by breakfast (huge breakfast! pancakes and syrup!) and lunch of the day before the race- this increases your odds of getting rid of the bulk in your gut before the race starts.

As always you can:

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