Nutrition for a marathon

May 19, 2009

We often write about the extreme world of marathon running, reporting on events and notifying you of the world’s toughest marathons. Having run a number of half marathons we have nothing but respect for those individuals who pit their bodies and their minds over the distance of a full marathon – 26.2 miles – and those who challenge themselves over even greater distances and obstacles – be that ice, mountain, desert or jungle.

Understand that a very important element in preparation to challenge yourself over these huge distances is not just the training schedule but – and we suggest just as important – also the right nutrition. Your body needs to be properly energised and hydrated and so we found this excellent advice given by The Runners Guide whose website is www.therunnersguide.com

It is very sound advice.

It’s important for everyone to eat a healthy diet.  The right food helps your body function at its optimum level.  For runners, a specific diet is even more important.  Without the right nutrition, a runner isn’t going to have enough energy to get through the day.  That’s why it’s important to follow these simple diet guidelines.

Avoid processed foods. These contain chemicals and additives that just bog your system down and make it work less efficiently. Sticking to natural unprocessed foods will give you more energy and make you feel better.

Eat your vegetables. You should have a variety or fresh vegetables everyday. This gives you tons of vitamins and minerals, and is a better, natural alternative to taking tons of supplements.

Get lots of carbs. It’s a growing trend in this country to cut down to little or no carbs.  Even if you’re trying to lose weight, runners should have more carbs in their diet than the average person, not fewer.  You need carbs for energy to get through your run.  Just be sure to eat whole grains and complex carbohydrates rather than relying only on sugars and other simple carbohydrates.

So there you have it and there is a busy schedule of marathons coming up in the summer – here is the list of North American marathons provided by www.marathonguide.com –  if you want to check out the details just click on the link.

5/17/09 Scotiabank Blue Nose International Marathon Halifax NS
5/17/09 Capital City Marathon Olympia WA
5/17/09 Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon Cleveland OH
5/17/09 Post-News Colorado Colfax Marathon Aurora CO
5/17/09 Christiana Care Health Systems Delaware Marathon Wilmington DE
5/17/09 Cellcom Green Bay Marathon Green Bay WI
5/17/09 American Red Cross of Monroe County Pocono Mountain Run For The Red Marathon Pocono Mountains PA
5/17/09 Woody’s RV World Red Deer Marathon Red Deer AB
5/17/09 Rockford Marathon Rockford IL
5/17/09 Sugarloaf/USA Marathon Eustis ME
5/23/09 United National Indian Tribal Youth, Inc. (UNITY) Andy Payne Marathon Oklahoma City OK
5/23/09 Traverse City State Bank Bayshore Marathon Traverse City MI
5/23/09 Prince of Wales Island International Marathon Craig AK
5/24/09 Buffalo Marathon Buffalo NY
5/24/09 Coeur d’ Alene Marathon Coeur d’Alene ID
5/24/09 Mad City Marathon (Madison) Madison WI
5/24/09 Med-City Marathon Rochester MN
5/24/09 Ottawa Marathon (National Capital Race Weekend) Ottawa ON
5/24/09 Saskatchewan Marathon Saskatoon SK
5/24/09 Stillwater Marathon Stillwater MN
5/24/09 KeyBank Vermont City Marathon Burlington VT
5/24/09 Wickham Park Marathon Melbourne FL
5/24/09 Wyoming Marathon Laramie WY
5/25/09 City of Los Angeles Marathon (L.A. Marathon) Los Angeles CA
5/30/09 Newport Marathon Newport OR
5/31/09 Flying Feet Bob Potts Heritage Rail Trail Marathon York PA
5/31/09 HSBC Calgary Marathon Calgary AB
5/31/09 Minneapolis Marathon Minneapolis MN
5/31/09 Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon San Diego CA
6/6/09 Dog Valley Dog Marathon Sierraville CA
6/6/09 Forest of Nisene Marks Marathon Aptos CA
6/6/09 God’s Country Marathon Coudersport PA
6/6/09 Caring Foundation of Montana Governor’s Cup Marathon Helena MT
6/6/09 Green River Marathon Kent WA
6/6/09 Ridge Runner Races Cairo WV
6/6/09 Sunburst Marathon South Bend IN
6/7/09 Casper Wyoming Marathon Casper WY
6/7/09 Deadwood-Mickelson Trail Marathon Deadwood SD
6/7/09 NipMuck Trail Marathon Ashford CT
6/7/09 North Olympic Discovery Marathon Port Angeles WA
6/7/09 San Juan Island Marathon Friday Harbor WA
6/7/09 Steamboat Marathon Steamboat Springs CO
???? Edge to Edge Marathon Ucluelet BC
6/8/09 Marathon de la Baie Charlo NB
6/13/09 Bear Lake Marathon Garden City UT
6/13/09 Mangum Track Club Boogie Marathon Ellerbe NC
6/13/09 Hatfield-McCoy Marathon Williamson WV
6/13/09 Marathon-to-Marathon Marathon IA
6/13/09 Maryville Marathon, The Chamber Country Classic Maryville MO
6/13/09 City of Rexburg Teton DAM Marathon Rexburg ID
6/13/09 Daily Herald Utah Valley Marathon Provo UT
6/14/09 Mama Rose’s Estes Park Marathon Estes Park CO
6/14/09 Lake Placid Marathon Lake Placid NY
6/14/09 Swan Lake Marathon Viborg SD
6/20/09 Grandma’s Marathon Duluth MN
6/20/09 ConocoPhillips Mayor’s Marathon Anchorage AK
6/20/09 Niagara Ultra 50k, full and half marathon Niagara On The Lake ON
6/21/09 Johnny Miles Marathon New Glasgow NS
6/21/09 Manitoba Marathon Winnipeg MB
???? Mayo Midnight Marathon Mayo YT
6/27/09 Jay Mountain Marathon Mont-Tremblant QC
6/27/09 Pacific Crest Marathon Sunriver OR
6/27/09 Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Marathon Seattle WA
6/27/09 Run Charlevoix Marathon Charlevoix MI
6/27/09 Running with the Devil Marathon, 1/2, & 50 mile ultra Boulder City NV
6/28/09 UCC Coffee Kona Marathon Keauhou-Kona HI
???? VM Team Medicine Seafair Marathon SEAFAIR Marathon Bellevue WA
7/4/09 Foot Traffic Foot Traffic Flat Marathon Portland OR
7/11/09 Grandfather Mountain Marathon Boone NC
7/11/09 Half Voyageur Trail Marathon Carlton MN
7/11/09 Knee Knackering North Shore Trail Run Vancouver BC
7/11/09 Leadville Trail Marathon Leadville CO
7/12/09 Missoula Marathon Missoula MT
7/13/09 Adventurecorps Badwater Ultra Marathon Badwater CA
7/18/09 University of Okoboji Marathon Okoboji IA

The marathons above will probably feel like a stroll in the park in comparison to The Polar Marathon – a video from the 2007 event can be seen below – thanks to polarmarathon

So whether its a more standard marathon, or a more extreme version, make sure you pay attention to your diet.



  1. […] Go here to see the original: Nutrition for a marathon « Extreme Sports […]

  2. Impressive list, which will be a busy summer indeed. I actually didn’t realize that there are THAT many marathons.

    • I know – quite scary isn’t it!

  3. […] and Summer 2009 Race Calendar « Becoming an Ironman Training Team…Nutrition for a marathon « Extreme Sports…BikeDenver.org » Councilwoman Carla Madison wants YOU to park your bike with […]

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