Sentinel Performance LLC

This weekend, here in Columbus, OH, will be the 39th annual Columbus Marathon! This event is a wonderful tradition for a run-happy community, and also raises the age-old question of how to best prepare for race day the night before! If you are planning to run this weekend, or any time soon in another city, here are a few night-before tips to make sure your body is ready for the ultimate test: 

-       -  Eat a carbohydrate-heavy meal: The "International Journal of Sports Medicine" published an article in 2013 stating that you should consume a meal containing 7g of carbohydrates/kilogram of bodyweight in order to properly load up your glycogen stores for the race (so, for example, if you weigh 150lbs, you need a night-before-race meal that contains 477g of carbohydrates

-       -   Don’t skip the protein: though not the body’s first choice for energy, protein balance is still crucial pre-race because it will balance your insulin levels, and prevent you from crashing too quickly (a marathon is long, after all!). Shoot for 12-15% of your pre-race calories to come from protein

-        - Avoid fatty and sugary foods: although carbs are essentially complex sugar compounds, you need to watch out for the sweets and the fats the night before the big day (wait ‘til you cross that finish line to celebrate!). Simple sugars and fatty foods can be difficult for the digestive system to process, and therefore, could give you gastric issues the morning of the race (Not the ideal time to have a bellyache!)

One last note: make sure to eat early on in the night so that you have plenty of time to digest that meal, and give the body a chance to turn your carbs into glycogen so that they are readily stored when you cross the start line.

Once you have all your plans set up, have fun and enjoy the ride! (or, run, ha). You’ve put a lot of time and effort into your training, so don’t throw it all away with poor night-before nutrition; and, as always, you know exactly where to turn for all your pre-competition needs! 

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