For marathon runners, finding filling and healthy recipes to feed your endless appetite can be daunting. You know the feeling: you eat a normal-sized meal, feel pleasantly full, and then an hour later find yourself absolutely famished. A quality breakfast is one of the easiest and healthiest ways to give your body the strength it needs to get through the day’s workout-and slash those afternoon cravings. Below are a few simple and flavorful breakfast recipes to fuel your training regimen.
Tools needed: toaster oven, measuring cups, skillet, whisk, bowls, knives
Pre-run: English muffin with peanut butter and ½ banana
Pre-run, you want to limit fiber and fats and focus on carbs, with a little protein. When I trained for my marathon, I liked to toast a Food for Life gluten-free English muffin and top it with a thin layer of peanut butter and half a sliced banana. It was the perfect pre-workout meal, giving me just enough energy to get through those painful long runs without feeling too full.
Post-run: Plain Greek yogurt sweetened with almond butter or peanut butter and fruit
With nearly 12g of protein per 1/2 cup serving, Greek yogurt is a great recovery food. Sweetened with a little fresh fruit (I am a big fan of sliced apricots and, of course, the second half of the aforementioned banana) and made a little more filling with the inclusion of all-natural nut butter, this yogurt bowl is a keeper-for marathon runners and non-runners alike. It’s simple: measure ½ cup of Greek yogurt and pour it into a medium-sized bowl. Add about a tablespoon of nut butter and some sliced fresh fruit, mix it all together, and you have yourself a great snack. Tip: add a little vanilla extract, stevia, and a few chocolate chips, and you have yourself a delicious bowl of cookie dough-flavored Greek yogurt. Perfect for dessert!
Weekend brunch: Hearty veggie- (and/or meat-) filled omelet with toast and orange juice.
You know the feeling-you wake up the morning after a 17-mile run and you feel like you haven’t eaten for weeks. Never mind the two dinners you shoveled down last night, your stomach needs food ASAP, and I recommend a hearty two-egg omelet with plenty of cheese, meat, and veggies, with a side of buttered toast and a tall glass of OJ. Whisk together two eggs in a small bowl and pour into a nonstick skillet. Turn the stove to medium heat and let cook until the egg begins to firm up. Add a slice of cheese, a handful of chopped fresh veggies, and whatever meat your heart desires (or your diet permits-I like to add ham or crispy bacon). When the egg is almost cooked and the cheese has melted, fold half of the omelet on itself and let cook for a few more minutes until the egg has firmed up completely. Spread some butter on a lightly toasted piece of bread, pour yourself a big glass of juice and celebrate your accomplishments-as a runner and a chef!