I admit that I love salty junk food, so I’m glad to know that popcorn in a healthy snack. Popcorn is high in fiber and is also heart healthy. However, you want to make sure that you buy popcorn that is at least 90% fat free and does not have butter already in it. You can use butter spray on it if you need the butter fix. In addition, popping your own the old-fashioned way is a great way to do it!
Many of my running friends are chocolate addicts, so they’re happy that dark chocolate is good for them. Dark chocolate is high in antioxidants and can help you to stay healthy. Some studies have also shown that it can help to relieve stress and help to keep your blood pressure down. Just remember that it should be eaten in moderation.
Another healthy snack for the salty junk foodies is chips and salsa. Salsa is actually very good for you – it’s high in vitamins and antioxidants. Combined with baked tortilla chips – it makes a great snack for runners.
Dry roasted peanuts are another snack idea. Peanuts are a super source of protein and fiber. There was also a study done that showed the longer peanuts are roasted, the higher the levels of antioxidants. Also, peanuts that still have their skins are high in antioxidants.
Pudding is another great snack idea for runners. It’s another good source of calcium. You can either make it yourself with the mix – or buy it in the little snack cups. Those are convenient to have around whenever you need that little snack.
Runners need to make sure that they are properly fueled to run at their best. And sometimes you need to have a little something to eat between meals. In fact, studies have shown that you should be eating a little something every 3-4 hours. These snacks will get you satisfied without you having to feel guilty about snacking – whether you are a “sweet” person or a “salty” person. And, they will keep you fueled for your runs.
Having a running streak is excellent motivation to get out the door to get your run in. All of us have days where we’d probably like to stay in bed that extra hour, but we know that we need to get our run in. So, having the streak makes it easier. And, all runners know that the hardest step on those days is the first one out the door.
Running every day keeps you healthier. Personally, I have had few colds in my life and rarely anything worse. One year, I came down with a case of the shingles. I still made myself run a mile each day – and was over them in a week. I firmly believe that running got the nasty stuff out of my system a lot quicker.
If you think you may have an inner streaker in you wanting to get out – there are some things that you want to remember. First of all, you need support of your family. My husband knows that I’m going to get my run in each day even if nothing else gets done. And, he’s alright with that – and supports my running in so many ways.
Being a streaker doesn’t mean running flat out, long distances every day. You need to take easy days, also. There are days where you may just run a slow mile or two when you are recovering from a longer run or speed work. These “rest” days are very important.
Also, you need to listen to your body. This is truly the way to keep running through life, if you’re a streaker or not. If your body is telling you to take an extra easy day – make sure that you do it.
Now, I know that everyone is not cut out to be a streaker. But, I know that I enjoy my running each day – and can’t remember a day when I didn’t get the run done. It works for me – keeps me healthy, energetic, positive and full of life.
Every runner has had those days. The key is to get through it and finish up your run. Believe it or not – sometimes running is more mental than physical.
So, how do you get a little extra motivational push to get through your run? Try positive affirmations for runners! Affirmations are defined as something declared to be true; a positive statement or judgment. Affirmations are powerful if you are feeding your mind positive statements. I am a firm believer in positive in all areas of my life. In my personal life – my business life – and my running life.
A positive, motivational energetic affirmation can help you get rid of the negative self-talk that may happen on a hard run. You know the negative self-talk: “I’ll never make it up that hill”, “I just can’t run anymore”, etc. More positive self-talk will help your self-confidence – and so will you.
Think of a one line statement that you can say to yourself over and over when you need that little extra push. Two of my favorites are: “I am a strong and healthy runner” and “I run all distances with ease”.
Here are a few more examples of some great running affirmations:
Saying something positive to yourself over and over will help you get through that rough spot or up that big hill. You know – like the little engine that could – but instead of starting with “I think I can” – say “I know I can”!
Oatmeal is a truly timeless breakfast dish for runners. It has all the right proportions of complex and simple carbohydrates, fat and protein. It also tastes delicious. Not everyone, however, can eat oats. If you are one of these people, then you can try rice congee, which is very easy to digest, or quinoa porridge, millet porridge and buckwheat porridge.
Granola is basically baked oatmeal with some oil added. It is a recipe founded in 1951 by Willie Pelzer, who wanted to discover a better way of eating rolled oats. It reached popularity in the 1960s among the hippies and has since considered as one of the better health foods available.
Toast is very easy and fast to make. This is a great option for runners who feel that they do not have enough time to prepare their breakfast meals. We recommend you to look for bread which has short and sweet ingredient list. If it has sugar or wheat gluten or anything else you cannot comprehend, then do not buy it. Serve your toast with 100 percent all natural almond butter and sliced banana.
You should not consume the sugary type of chocolate you often find on the high street but a simple mix of warm milk and top-notch cooking chocolate, which generally consists of around 70 percent cocoa solids. You need around 30 grams of chocolate for each cup of milk. Add a little sugar to provide that initial boost. You will have the fat and protein in the milk to fuel the energy and to help you recover a couple of hours after your run as well.
Your optimum performance is related to the high supply of nutrients into your body while maintaining the toxicity level low. Drinking freshly-made juices helps you to achieve both of these goals because they help you to eradicate toxins from your body. Home made juices are also a great source of minerals, vitamins and other natural chemical elements that your body needs to fight disease and function at its best.
A lot of people seem to be confused to differentiate between juices and smoothies. Smoothies are made from fresh fruits which are blended using a blender while juices are fresh fruits that are put within a juicer. Fruits that are blended using a blender will contain fibres while a juicer will produce a fruit juice which is completely separated from its fibres. The advantage of using a juicer is to allow us consuming large quantities of nutrient-rich juice without burdening our digestive system with their fibres. Freshly extracted fruits and vegetables that are properly juiced using a juicer will be able to by pass your digestive system and be absorbed very quickly. We need to stress, however, that we are not advising you to ditch fibres from your diet. We just want to let you know that juices complement your high fibre diet.
All juices offer great nutritious benefits but in our opinion, the green juices are the best for runner as they have high chlorophyll content which can assist you to oxygenate your blood. Green vegetables also have high minerals such as iron, calcium and magnesium, which are all important for health. Green juices also have the least impact on your blood sugar so you will not experience sudden blood sugar spikes that can drain your energy.
Most of the time, these headaches are caused by dehydration. Make sure that you are drinking enough water – even before you head out the door. Not only the day before, but you need to start hydrating a few days before your scheduled long run. You know that you are properly hydrated if your urine is clear or pale in color. The day of your run, you need to drink at least 16 ounces of water about an hour before you head out the door. Then drink about 4 ounces right before you leave.
During your run, if you are running longer than an hour, you should drink about 6-8 ounces of water every 30 minutes. For even longer runs, you may want to make one of your stops for a sports drink so that you can replace electrolytes lost. When you finish your run – make sure that you drink at least 20 ounces of water for replenishment.
Make sure that you are eating something about an hour before your long run. Many people, myself included, will get headaches if they don’t eat. And, if you run in the mornings, you’ve gone many hours without eating. A banana and yogurt is a great light snack before your run. Personally, I’ll have either ½ or a whole Power Bar before I head out in the morning. It gives me the energy I need to complete the run without weighing me down.
The sun can be another cause of runner’s headaches. If the sun is bright and you are constantly squinting – the result can be a headache. Wearing sunglasses and a cap will help with this. Also, try to not run during the heat of the day.
Usually running-induced headaches are harmless. Taking an ibuprofen or pain reliever should also help. As with anything, if these headaches last more than a day or you start getting more serious symptoms, please see your doctor. It could be something more serious than simply a running headache.