What constitutes a perfect pre-race meal? This is a tough one. It’s not as easy as you would think… eating a Cliff bar and then going out to race an obstacle race for over an hour is not going to cut it. Sure, you might get the carbs you need, but what about the sodium? What about the fats? You want something that gives you the RIGHT energy your body needs to race, and enough of it to last you through.
My nutritionist has given me a great formula – white rice, with coconut oil, almond butter, and salt. It’s got everything you need! The rice supplies you with your carbs, the oil and nut butter your fats (once your body uses up the carbs, it will start burning through the fats), and the salt will give you the sodium you need. Sodium is important because it makes up for the salt your body will be sweating out. Avoid adding honey or sugar. I know it seems deliciously temping, but these things can spike your insulin levels, which will decrease from your performance. I used to eat oatmeal before the race, but oats are very fibrous and are harder for your body to digest. Save that energy for the race.
Here’s what you want to do, and what you’ll need:
- ½ cup white rice, uncooked
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsp almond butter (or any nut butter, including peanut butter)
- 1 tsp
Cook the rice the night before the race. Rice is always a 2:1 water vs. rice ratio, so for ½ cup of rice, you’ll want to boil it in 1 cup of water. After the rice is cooked, add the remainder of the ingredients in while the rice is hot, and stir to combine. Eat this race morning, cold. It’s super tasty! This amount of rice will probably make enough to serve three people. You can keep leftovers for after the race. This is also great recovery food, and feel free to add some honey or maple syrup in if you plan on eating it after your race.
Eat what you deem an appropriate size for you. Think of what you would eat for a bowl of cereal or oatmeal before a race. Don’t forget to leave yourself time to digest. I try and eat about two hours before my race start time.
I also always consume gels while I’m racing. As a general rule, taking one every 5 kilometres (3 miles) will help keep your system topped up. I go for gels that are a little less viscous, like Honey Stingers, so that my mouth doesn’t feel like it’s been glued shut while I’m racing.
AND, don’t forget to drink your BeetElite! Happy racing!