If you put the right fuel in your body, it will help you get the most out of your run. Eating an hour or two before a run can prevent fatigue and benefit your running performance. The converse is also true–the wrong choice of pre-run snack can give you major problems, whether it was the KitKat you grabbed for fuel five minutes before you left your house or something you ate hours ago. Some foods just don’t mix with cardio.
Here is a list of five foods you should avoid before a run.
1) Sausages or bacon
Sausages and bacon are packed with saturated fat and sodium. Their high-fat content makes them tough to digest, which can result in stomach cramps during exercise.
2) Nachos with cheese
Although nachos are high in simple carbohydrates, these yummy tortilla chips are high in fat, which slows digestion, leading to gastric problems on your run. Cheese has a high-fat content, which can cause you to feel lethargic and increase your stomach’s acidic content. Eating cheese before a workout is a big no-no if you want to avoid feeling extra gassy.
3) Eggs (any)
Eggs are obviously healthy and they make a great post-run snack or meal, but not before your run. Eggs are rich in protein, but just take too long to digest. They are also often cooked with butter, which is high in fat and can slow you down. Instead of eggs and toast, try eating something easier on your stomach, like oatmeal.
4) A salad
While a salad is normally great for your diet, healthy greens can cause some serious discomfort when you’re on a run. Lettuce, broccoli, kale and spinach are super high in fibre, which is guaranteed to cause abdominal gas and can make you feel bloated–or worse.
No matter how good they look, pastries tend to sit like a brick in your stomach. Doughnuts and scones elevate your blood sugar, which can lead to a mid-run “crash” when your blood sugar suddenly plummets afterward. If you’ve had food high in sugar, try to mix in an easily digestible fruit, like an orange or a banana, that will quickly replenish your energy stores.