This week, I'm talking about one of my favourite subjects. Food.
I have not long been home after a particularly damp run, and my treat is a latte and a snickers bar. Not the healthiest of snacks, but when chocolate calls.......you all know that feeling.
Now that the winter weather is creeping in, I have been thinking more and more about which foods our bodies like to use as running fuel.
It is well documented that for morning runs, a nice bowl of hot porridge and fruit such as a banana hits the spot, whereas some people prefer a lighter breakfast cereal, or one of my own personal choices, peanut butter on toast. I do know one runner who can consume a full English before a marathon; a breakfast not for the faint-hearted, but each to his own.
Some runners prefer pasta the night before, which is high in carbs, essential for sustaining you on a long haul, and even beetroot and coffee have been discussed as an ideal food for keeping us going.
So, which to choose? When I was new to running, I read up about this subject quite a lot. But then as I progressed in my chosen sport, experience quickly told me which foods my body liked, and which ones it most certainly didn't. I only made the mistake of trying to run on a full stomach once, but we won't go into too much detail on that one.
I found that sugar, whether it be natural or otherwise, really got me motoring. Feeling a bit peckish one day an hour before my run, I downed a large piece of home-made flapjack. I don't think I have ever ran a mile so fast since; by the time I got to the next village I was like a monkey on acid.
What I discovered, after talking to several of my running friends, was that the choice is very much personal to the individual. If you are a new runner, keep meals light, and play around with different foods, and you will quickly discover what suits you best. Leave a suitable gap between food and run, to avoid a stitch and/or unwelcome toilet break.
My Grandmother used to say “Listen to your body, and it will tell you what it wants”. A sound piece of advice from a very wise woman, which I remembered and have always put into practice.........
Now where did I put that family pack of Snickers bars????