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Balanced Diet Plan for Marathon Runner

Balanced Diet Plan

  • If a balanced diet plan is followed, a runner will be healthier while running a rewarding marathon
  • Complex carbohydrates, the starchier carbohydrates, will release a steady level of energy while maintaining an even keel of blood sugar levels
  • Protein is important for the rebuilding and repairing of the runner’s overexerted muscle tissue
  • When it comes to snacks, fruits and vegetables are at the top of the recommended snacking list for a marathon runner and anyone else looking to maintain a healthy body by means of a well balanced diet plan
  • Water or sports drinks are vital in keeping the runner hydrated and energized


A marathon runner must be conscious of what he or she eats and drinks when training for the big race. If a balanced diet plan is followed, a runner will be healthier while running a rewarding marathon. When training for the long distance run, a balanced diet of the right foods and drinks are mandatory to make certain the race is accomplished without any physical injuries or illnesses. To ensure a safe outcome, the right amount of food and hydration is needed for a successful marathon.

With a marathon’s length at 26.2 miles, a well balanced diet is mandatory. Carbohydrates will make up about 50 to 65 percent of the diet. This percentage will help maintain a safe energy level while training as you increase endurance. If enough carbohydrates are not consumed, the blood sugar level will plummet. This bout of hypoglycemia will cause symptoms which include headaches, dizziness, lack of concentration, confusion, unsteadiness, fatigue and possibly even fainting. The carbohydrates are extremely important to avoid such a scenario.

There are two types of carbohydrates – simple and complex. Simple carbohydrates come from sugary sweets. Aside from a treat once in a while to satisfy that chocolate craving, these types of carbohydrates should be avoided. Complex carbohydrates, the starchier carbohydrates, will release a steady level of energy while maintaining an even keel of blood sugar levels. Complex carbohydrates include foods such as wholegrain breads, cereals, beans, lentils, nuts, whole grain pasta, brown rice, potatoes, fruits and vegetables.

Protein is the next essential food needed to be a strong and healthy marathon runner. Protein should make up 20 to 25 percent of the total calories consumed. The best sources of protein which will help in maintaining a lean muscle mass are lean meat, chicken, fish eggs, nuts and seeds, beans, and low fat dairy products. Protein is important for the rebuilding and repairing of the runner’s overexerted muscle tissue.

Fats are also part of a marathon runner’s daily food regime and should tally up to be between 15 to 25 percent of the total calories in a diet. Unsaturated fats are recommended as the healthiest fats. Nuts and seeds, fish and cooking oils, preferably sunflower or olive oil, are great sources of healthy fats. Even so, they should be used in moderation to avoid high cholesterol and continue maintaining a lean muscle mass.

When it comes to snacks, fruits and vegetables are at the top of the recommended snacking list for a marathon runner and anyone else looking to maintain a healthy body by means of a well balanced diet plan. Fruit and vegetable juices, which include necessary vitamins, are also suggested. Juices will also aid in keeping you hydrated. Other snacks may consist of healthy proteins like string cheese, almonds, fruit filled yogurts, and more.

Food is not the only essential part of a marathon runner’s diet to increase endurance. Water or sports drinks are vital in keeping the runner hydrated and energized. The body requires plenty of hydration to function properly. This will control your body temperature while the working muscles produce excessive amounts of heat. Warm and cold weather alike, fluid is necessary for the marathon runner’s body and should be evenly consumed throughout the day, especially when actively training and running. Dehydration signs include dizziness, fatigue, headaches, exhaustion, cramps, and more.

Good nutrition for the runner before, during, and after the marathon should never be taken lightly. A balance diet plan with the right choices of food and drinks will give the marathon runner an end result which is safely and rewardingly accomplished

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2 Responses to “Balanced Diet Plan for Marathon Runner”

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  2. That is fantastic and quite helpful post. I am runner and I always worried about diet and nutrition’s. Can you tell me was diet is good for 5k running?

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