Hello wonderful No Meat Athlete readers! My name is Katherine and I’m the Runner Wife. While my PR splits are more like Matt or Erin’s cooldown jogs, I’ve been fortunate to have some great race experiences in the past few years. I credit my successful long training runs, and races, with proper scheduling, conditioning and, most of all, nutrition. For Matt’s take on pre-race nutrition, check out his page here! I’ll break down my method by each topic in an effort to provide some sense of order.
I always research training plans at least a month before I need to start training – for a marathon, I reserve at least 16 weeks for training, so I secured my Marine Corps Marathon training plan around Memorial Day this year and started training this week. I always adjust training plans so my long runs land on Saturdays. I don’t know what it is, but I love going to bed early on Fridays (yes, I’m kind of an old maid), waking up before the mist has burned off the pavement, and banging out a good training run while most of my peers are sleeping off hangovers. I also revel in my luxurious rest days on Sunday by lounging around the house, getting diner food with my husband, and doing some yoga. If I did my long runs on Tuesdays, what then? No celebratory eggs and toast for me the next day. What’s the point in running?
Sauteed Chicken with Fresh Tomato Sauce Over Pasta
- 1 chicken breast, fat trimmed away, chopped into bite-sized chunks
- 1 cup grape tomatoes
- 2 T. pine nuts
- 1/3 c. fresh basil, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 T. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup whole wheat penne, uncooked
- Boil water, season with sea salt, and add pasta. Cook till al dente and set aside.
- Heat olive oil and pan and add garlic on medium heat.
- Add chicken and saute for 2-3 minutes, until edges are just cooked.
- Add tomatoes to pan and cover for 5-7 minutes.
- When tomatoes have started to burst, add pine nuts, basil and pasta.
- Toss to coat and serve immediately.
2 hours before run: 1/2 cup oatmeal with water, cinnamon and a drizzle of maple syrup, 1 spoonful of peanut butter, big glass of water
1 hour before run: glass of water
That’s it! Good carbs, a bit of fat and protein, and enough water to hydrate me without necessitating a pit stop at mile 2 😉
So, like I said, every runner is different – your dietary needs/goals might not be the same as mine, or you might really hate running in the morning, or you don’t belong to a gym so you can’t spend endless hours on the ArcTrainer. I believe with enough patience and a good training log (this is invaluable!!), you’ll find the combination that works best for you. And always remember that just because one thing works doesn’t mean something else won’t work, or work even better, so keep an open mind and enjoy the process! Running has been one of the greatest challenges, and one of the greatest rewards in my life thus far and I’m still learning every day how to care for my body so I can run for many years to come!