• Question: Beafor,e during, and after, excesising what natural products can you eat to stay healthier

    Asked by 849sprg29 to Andrew, Dan, Helen, Katy, LauraAnne on 17 Nov 2016.
    • Photo: LauraAnne Furlong

      LauraAnne Furlong answered on 17 Nov 2016:

      I like eating porridge 2-3 hours before I’m about to do a long exercise session, like if I was going hill walking or horse riding, and I will add some blueberries or other berries to it to make it interesting. It is a food that gives you lots of slow release energy, so it can keep you going for several hours.

      During exercise, I usually have water or some fruit juice in water which has some sugar as well as fluid, if it was over an hour though I’d have some Lucozade Sport with me. I’d have some nuts or trail mix to snack on, and fruit like bananas. Bananas are also good before exercise.

      Afterwards, it is important to get protein and carbohydrate as soon as possible, so your body can start refuelling and repairing itself. I like having chocolate milk as a natural recovery drink. Blueberries are also very good post exercise, as is peanut butter or hummus on some wholewheat crackers or pitta bread, or a yoghurt. After exercise it is important to eat a proper dinner as soon as possible, and I like something like chicken or steak, sweet potatoes, broccoli and beans.

    • Photo: Helen Hanstock

      Helen Hanstock answered on 17 Nov 2016:

      Some great ideas from LauraAnne!

      I also like porridge in the morning before a race (usually 40 min-2 hours). If the race is long I might take some jelly babies (not very natural but great fast energy!) or if I’m out for a longer day in the mountains I would take a packed lunch and some high energy snacks like dried fruit.

      After a race I’ll have a banana or granola bar, then a little later (ideally within 1-2 hours of finishing) I’ll either go home or find a cafe or catering van for a proper meal. Favourite post-race meals are soup & bread, scrambled eggs & salmon/tomatoes on toast or (my favourite!) a veggie or meaty chilli full of meat or lentils, beans and vegetables with rice. The eggs/meat/beans/lentils give some protein and the bread/rice helps to replace the carbohydrates I have used.

    • Photo: Katy Griggs

      Katy Griggs answered on 17 Nov 2016:

      I agree with both Laura Anne and Helen, I always have porridge before a race or long training session, due to its slow release of energy. I have to eat about 2-3 hours before to ensure I don’t get any stomach discomfort during the session/race.

      I find it difficult to consume much during exercise, so often opt for gels during a 1/2 marathon distance race. But this is a personal choice, as Helen mentioned some people prefer to have some jelly babies. During breaks in sport, I am not a heavy sweating and often play indoors or in cool climates so I often just stick to water or fruit squash with a bit of sugar. You may want to consider a sports drink or a bit of salt in your drink if you are a heavy sweater, which will help to replace your electrolyte losses.

      After a race I normally have a banana then try and eat a meal within 1-2 hours afterwards. I am often not hungry straight away and find it hard to eat. A mix of carbohydrates and proteins is important for this meal.