Natural Long-Distance Energy Sources

Though I real­ize not all of my read­ers are Veg­ans, many of you may be inter­ested in keep­ing an organic, nat­ural approach to your marathon nutri­tion.  With train­ing for the Komen Dal­las Race for the Cure, Ulti­mate Hike, 13.1 Dal­las, Fort Worth Marathon, White Rock Marathon, and scads more races on the cal­en­dar of upcom­ing events; it is the opti­mal time to devise your plan of action.  As any endurance ath­lete knows, nutri­tion is a key ele­ment of suc­cess­ful train­ing and enjoy­able par­tic­i­pa­tion.  Here are a few tips for fuel­ing and hydrat­ing à la nat­ural.

Organic elec­trolyte replacement:

Coconut water.  This is a great source of potas­sium, mag­ne­sium, phos­pho­rous, sodium and cal­cium with­out the added sugar or sweet­en­ers (look for unsweet­ened vari­eties).  Pickle juice is a favorite too.

Recipes for nat­ural energy gel/energy on-the-go:

Raw Sport Gel Recipe

  • 4 dates (dried dates, soaked for a few hours or med­jool dates)
  • 2 Tbsp raw agave nectar
  • 1 Tbsp lime zest
  • 2 Tbsp goji berries (soaked for a few hours)
  • 1/2 tsp pow­dered Greens
  • 1/2 tsp maca powder
  • Sea salt to taste

Com­bine all the ingre­di­ents in a blender or small food proces­sor.  Add water or more agave if needed until desired con­sis­tency is reached.  Put into plas­tic zip-lock bag or other con­ve­nient container.

On-The-Go Spir­ulina Guacamole

  • 2 avo­ca­dos
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 tsp garlic
  • 3 tsp Spir­ulina (more or less to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp dulse flakes
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 small onion
  • Cayenne pep­per to taste
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Pep­per to taste

Put all ingre­di­ents into a blender and pack­age to-go in a zip-lock bag for convenience.

Post-training refu­el­ing:

Some­thing very alka­liz­ing like fresh or dried figs, Chlorella, Spir­ulina, any type of greens, cucum­ber, dates, mel­ons, fresh squeezed veg­gie or fruit juices with a zing of lemon, plain coconut milk, sprouted grain tor­tillas.  These alka­liz­ing foods will help the body clear out the lac­tic acid and meta­bolic waste by-products that accom­pany this type of phys­i­cal exer­tion. This is an impor­tant part of keep­ing the immune sys­tem strong dur­ing intense train­ing bouts.

Other tips:

Let the body rest the day before the big event.  This includes giv­ing the diges­tive sys­tem a head start.  Con­sider  eat­ing the big­ger meal for lunch the day before, not din­ner.  This allows the body to digest the food prop­erly so that the nutri­ents can be uti­lized more effi­ciently the next day and allows one to wake up feel­ing light and ener­gized the next morning–not heavy and bloated.


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