What are Your Favorite Pre and Postrun Snacks?

Snacking used to be associated with overeating, but choosing healthy snacks before and after runs can help avoid getting too hungry and overeating at your next meal. They can also help fuel you for your run, and aid in recovery.

For a long time conventional wisdom was to run on an empty stomach. While it is a good rule of thumb to wait a couple hours after a full meal, it is actually beneficial to have at least a small snack of 100 to 300 calories between 30 minutes and 2 hours before a run. Fat and protein can be more difficult to digest, so focus on carbohydrates to fuel your muscles, such as a banana with honey.

Within 20 minutes after a run or workout is the best time to get some protein into your body, along with antioxidants and carbs (about 200-300 calories). Try a small portion (5 ounces) of protein-rich Greek yogurt with fresh or thawed-out strawberries, blueberries or raspberries. An apple or pear with some peanut butter or a couple cheese sticks with whole-wheat crackers is another good option. A good snack to get you through to your next meal is a handful of protein-rich nuts like walnuts, and almonds. A square of dark chocolate is also very good for you, as it is chock-full of antioxidants!

Tell us your own favorite snacks!

Tony has been a runner for over three decades, competing in cross country and track in high school and college, and road races for various clubs. He's served as team captain for several Corporate Challenge teams at YMCA of the USA, and has informally coached many friends over the years.

Tags: Y, YMCA, Run, Running, Jog, fitness, snacks, nutrition, protein, carbs, antioxidants, fruit, nuts, chocolate

You Might Also Like

Copyright © 2014 YMCA of the USA. All rights reserved.
The YMCA is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to put Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all.