Whether it’s your first marathon or you’re an experienced runner, you probably know there’s much more to it than just the cardio. Your entire lifestyle must adjust to support your training. How you train, and what you eat and drink, all counts when you’re preparing for such a challenge.
Here are registered dietitian and nutritionist Dawn Jackson Blatner’s tips for staying on track while preparing for a marathon:
1. Gear up. Invest in good running shoes and replace worn-out shoes to avoid injury and perform at your best. Most shoes last between 300-600 miles. If you notice they feel flat or the soles are worn, it may be time to replace them. But don’t wear brand-new shoes (or an untried outfit) on the day of the big race. You don’t want any unpleasant surprises during the marathon.
2. Stay hydrated. This means not just during the marathon, but throughout your training. Focus on hydrating regularly during the days, weeks — and months — leading up to the marathon. That does not mean chugging a huge amount of water just before the race, however. While training, drink 6-8 ounces every 20 minutes. Dilute sports drinks by 50% until you know how your body processes that particular drink. Don’t experiment with any new drinks on race day.
3. Eat healthy, whole foods. To build nutrition and fuel your energy, include plenty of protein such as eggs, nuts and seeds, lean meats and fish, beans and lentils. Choose Eggland’s Best eggs to boost nutrition, as they have six times more vitamin D than ordinary eggs. Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium to keep bones healthy. For runners who need to train indoors and may miss out on vitamin D from the sun, including EB eggs in your diet can help. The protein and omega-3s in eggs help reduce soreness and aid recovery after a tough workout. Eggland’s Best eggs contain more than twice the omega-3s as ordinary eggs, plus 25 percent less saturated fat, ten times more vitamin E and more than double the vitamin B12.
Eggland’s Best’s patented method of production and verification ensures every EB egg has superior qualities. EB offers tons of easy, nutrient-rich recipes at www.egglandsbest.com/recipes, such as these Green Eggs & Ham Cups:
Green Eggs & Ham Cups
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yields: 12 servings
Recipe by: Marciashealthyslice.com
· 7 Eggland's Best Eggs (large)
· 1 cup fresh spinach, chopped
· ¼ cup onions, finely chopped
· ½ cup broccoli florets, finely chopped
· ¾ cups ham, diced
· Salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste
· Shredded cheese of your choice (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Saute onions and broccoli over medium heat until soft. Add spinach, ham and continue cooking until spinach is wilted.
In mixing bowl, whisk together eggs and seasonings. Add vegetable and ham mixture to eggs.
Coat 12 muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray and fill each cup with egg/veggie mixture.
Top with shredded cheese (optional).
Bake 15-17 minutes or until eggs spring back or toothpick comes out clean.
Cool on rack and remove from pan. Enjoy warm or room temperature.
Egg cups keep in fridge 3-4 days and can be rewarmed in microwave or toaster oven, if desired.
4. Rest up. No matter what condition you're in before the marathon, your body needs rest days as much as training days. Take a recovery day after a particularly hard training session, and rest with your feet up the day before the marathon. Don’t run when injured, warm up before running, and stretch before and after you run.
5. Make it social. Nothing is more motivating than having a buddy or group to run with. Vary your training routine by running with different partners or groups to switch it up and challenge yourself.
6. Build strength gradually. Pace yourself, and keep a log so you can monitor your progress. Set small goals and gradually increase your distance. Remember that training for a marathon doesn’t just mean running. Do some cross-training by mixing in activities like yoga and weight training.
Whatever your fitness goals, everyone benefits from adding nutrition-packed foods to their diet. Eggland’s Best and Life Time 60day are challenging families across America to "Plus It Up" when it comes to their nutrition and wellness routine. For a chance to win prizes like product coupons, gift cards, fitness trackers, cooking equipment and more, enter Eggland’s Best “Plus It Up” Instant Win Sweepstakes at www.EBPlusItUpSweepstakes.com. One grand prize winner will receive $5,000 to plus up their family's fitness routine!