This tip comes to you from someone who might have just finished a 20-mile trail race and is eating A LOT! Along with sore muscles, a race comes with what I like to call the “Open Fridge Hall Pass” for a day or so (OK, maybe more than a day). Sure, there are extra sugar nibbles, but mostly I indulge in large plates of veggies, extra protein, bowls of rice, and not feel the least bit of guilt.
Because sometimes a little something extra is exactly what you need….especially on a trail run!
I’m all about being prepared out there in the woods when it comes to food, so let’s talk trail food!
the TIP: A little something extra out on the trails can take you farther
Taking food with you when you’re trail running is just plain smart. Because trails usually offer you more challenges–what with the hills and rocks and puddles and all–that you’ll most likely be working your body harder and need fuel sooner than on your routine road routes. Follow these tips to set yourself up for a great day:
- Add one more: If you usually take a Gu or gel or a bagel with the works (kidding, but doesn’t that sound yummy?) on your trail adventure, take one more than you think you’ll need.
- Take some on a shorty: Even if you’re plan is to be out for a short run with nature, slip something in your back pocket or in your water bottle zip pouch.
- Eat earlier: Because you’ll probably need fuel a bit earlier than on your road route, you’ll want to eat earlier (calculated more by exertion than by miles) and the extra food will carry you farther.
the WHY: Because you never know when you’ll turn into a rockstar
Have you ever had one of those “I could run forever” days? The stars are aligned (or the kids let you sleep an extra hour) and you’re cruising farther than you thought you could. Those are the days you’ll be glad you have an extra nibble along.
- Take full advantage of those “rockstar” days by staying fueled and able to play longer.
- If you run with friends, they might need some vittles and that extra Shotblock will come in handy so you can both have a strong morning.
- The most important reason to double up is safety. Trails offer another level of risk and if you’re out there longer than planned because of weather, an injury, having to backtrack from a missed turn, or climbing more hills than you bargained for, the extra fuel can save your day.
Of course, this habit of taking a little something extra is pretty familiar to us mommas. We always pack a few extra snacks, right? Nom, nom, nom….
Are you new to trail running?
But maybe you don’t know where to start… Oh, I hear ya, I had so many questions when I first tried it, so I created something just for you. It’s a (totally free) 5-part email course delivered right to your little inbox. You can sign up for Jumpstart a Trail Running eCourse for beginners right here!