10 Foods Sure to Liven Up Your Marathon Diet

There is no better example of the fact that you are what you eat than when you’re a marathon runner.
Woman running

While a good diet is important for a healthy balanced lifestyle, it becomes of paramount importance when you are an endurance runner.

Your diet needs to nourish your active lifestyle without slowing you down. This article serves to explore the different foods that marathon runners can add to their diet. If you already have a set diet, use this list to determine what else you can add to your cart nest time you go to the grocery store.

We will be focusing on an entire array of foods, from snacks to additions to your meals. You need to get yourself to a point where you can run without stopping. If you have already reached this level, you need to maintain it.

It is important to eat nutrient-rich foods just as it is important to keep hydration while running. See the below foods as the bottle of water to your lifestyle.

Presenting ten foods for a marathon runner – these foods offer a host of benefits and do not only concentrate on energy-rich fuel for running.

1. Yoghurt

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Yogurt contains live cultures which help with the maintenance of your digestive tract. It ensures that the digestive tract is working at its best. Besides this, it is also a good source of both protein and calcium. Yogurt also has anti-inflammatory properties which are good for runner injury recovery.

– How to add to your daily meal?

There are many ways to incorporate yogurt into your diet. You can add it to fruit at breakfast. Or if you make your smoothies, you can add some yogurt to these.

Yogurt can be used as a salad dressing together with herbs or can be combined with grated cucumber and used as a topping for grilled chicken, fish, etc.

2. Chicken


– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Runners need plenty of protein to build muscles and to repair muscles after a workout.

Free-radical damage can be combated by the substance selenium found in chicken. Chicken also contains niacin (Vitamin B) which promotes weight loss during exercise. Niacin prevents Alzheimer’s disease.

– How to add to your daily meal?

Chicken is a quick and easy to cook and goes with almost anything – pasta, sandwiches, wraps, salads. They can be grilled, boiled, baked, or poached. Cutting it into strips reduces the cooking time.

Chicken should form part of a full meal and the leftovers can be used as a snack or to complement a salad.

3. Cherries

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

This fruit is the most anti-oxidant fruit there is. The antioxidant that is particularly rich is called anthocyanins. They are good for athletic performance. It has a host of benefits including promoting of healthy blood vessels. It even helps with the prevention of cancer.

– How to add to your daily meal?

Cherries are the perfect size for a delicious snack. Eat them plain or place in a bowl with some almonds. These are great for snacking on while you’re at work or when watching TV.

4. Salmon

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Salmon is a mighty fish. It contains protein and is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids improve the heart’s performance during exercise. Consuming salmon has inflammation rescue properties and can alleviate symptoms found in asthma patients.

– How to add to your daily meal?

Like chicken, salmon is extremely versatile. It goes well with pasta, salads, soup, or even homemade pizza. You can grill, bake, or poach salmon.

5. Oranges


– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Oranges are rich in Vitamin C. Consuming oranges can reduce muscle soreness which runners can experience after a workout. Eat it regularly to ensure less discomfort after a workout.

– How to add to your daily meal?

Fresh orange juice in the morning is a great way to start your day. They can be added to salads and fruit snacks during the day.

6. Tomatoes

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Tomatoes contain the antioxidant lycopene – known to reduce the risk of cancer among other things. In addition to this, there are countless phytonutrients to be found in tomatoes. Phytonutrients help to reduce inflammation caused by exercise.

– How to add to your meal?

Tomatoes are a fun addition to any mean. Use it to top pasta, as a base for pizza; cherry tomatoes go well in a salad, slice tomatoes for sandwiches. They help to decorate your meal by adding color and dimension to your dishes.

7. Sweet Potatoes

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Sweet potatoes include Vitamin C, iron, and potassium. You should be eating this one all year.

  • Vitamin C reduces coughing and shortness of breath after exercise.
  • Iron helps to promote aerobic activity.
  • Potassium prevents cramps in the legs, stomach, and side as it is lost during sweating. Runners should increase their potassium intake to prevent cramps.

– How to add to your meal?

It can be mashed, sliced, and baked or grilled. It makes for a fantastic colorful side to a dish with chicken or salmon above. It is also naturally sweet and so makes for a good, healthy treat.

8. Eggs

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Aside from breastmilk, eggs are the second most complete source of proteins there is. It contains all the necessary amino acids to make sure that you can run without stopping – these amino acids promote muscle recovery which is essential for runners.

– How to add to your meal?

Eggs are the perfect way to start your day. You can have them boiled, poached, or scrambled. Add to it a slice of low GI toast and you’re all set for the day.

9. Almonds

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

It’s no secret that nuts are general all-rounders. Runners are encouraged to eat almonds three to five times a week as it contains Vitamin E. Vitamin E is not found in many foods, so this is a good source for this valuable Vitamin.

You should know that vitamin E prevents ill health in people who exercise. It reduced the chances of contracting pneumonia in people who exercise and are smokers by 69%.

– How to add to your meal?

Almonds can be added to pasta, salads, chicken dishes. Almonds are sold sliced as well to increase the options of adding it to dishes.  They are a perfect snack between meals.

10. Salad Greens

– How is it good for a marathon runner?

Green leaves of salad greens contain phytonutrients which help to reduce inflammation caused by exercise. They also have strong effect in the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

– How to add to your meal?

Salad greens are a colorful addition to any meal. It is a good base for salads and with a good sprinkle of lemon juice, makes for a delicious side.

These ten foods will be a fantastic addition to your life. Use them to be creative and search for new ways to use them other than what we have provided.

Happy healthy living! 


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