1. Honey Stinger: Honey Stinger has been in the nutrition game since 1954. They’ve got all the bases covered when it comes to energy on the go. Honey Stinger offers gels, waffles, chews, and granola bars. So if you’re picky about food texture, Honey Stinger has something for you.
Best for: Quick energy before or during your race without slowing you down.
2. Clif Bar: Clif Bar is synonymous with fuel. Packed with carbs and protein, Clif Bars keep you going full speed ahead while curbing your midday munchies. They’ve just added stuffed granola bars to their lineup of trail snacks. So if you liked the classics, definitely check out our new favorites like the hazelnut and coconut almond butter filled bars.
Best for: Keeping up your carbs when you’re putting in a lot of miles in between meals.
3. Peanut Butter and Honey: A plain old peanut butter and honey sandwich is cheap and easy. If you need a filling breakfast, eat a PB&H. If you need to pack a few days’ worth of food that won’t spoil, bring PB&H. If you need protein after a tough ride, slap some creamy JIF between some wheat and you have yourself a meal of champions. Why honey and not jelly? I’m glad you asked. It’s personal preference really. Although, local honey (made by local bees that pollinate local flowers) can improve your immunity towards pollen; whereas processed honey from the grocery store doesn’t offer the same health benefits.
Best for: Getting your day started right or just filling up the tank.
4. Kenyan Ugali: Let’s shift gears. I’ve never heard of ugali until I started running, and then it became a frequent meal. This traditional Kenyan dish comprised of kale, red onion, and a starchy dough ball is packed with carbs. It’s relatively easy to make, and your body will thank you come race day.
How to Make It: Boil four cups of water and two teaspoons of salt in a large saucepan. Gradually stir in two cups of white cornmeal. Reduce the heat and stir continuously, smoothing out any lumps. Cook it until it forms an even mush. At this point, the dough is like napalm; it sticks to your skin and burns… a lot. Following this next step is imperative. Let it cool before you start to roll the dough into balls. Just trust me on this one. In a separate pan sauté red onions, and your choice of dark leafy greens in a little olive oil. Serve, and enjoy.
Best for: Carb loading the night before.
5. Chicken and Rice with Salad: Salad is healthy blah blah- what really makes this a good recovery meal is the dressing. Don’t waste your time with sugar filled sweet stuff. Try balsamic vinegar and a couple spoons of cider vinegar. The vinegar makes the insulin receptors more sensitive. What does that mean? Well, it enables your body to metabolize the rice and spinach easily.
How to Make It: Mix your favorite greens and salad ingredients with about four ounces of grilled chicken or salmon. Top it with a vinegar dressing of choice. Cook a cup of brown sushi rice and mix with sliced cucumber, and avocado. Add a low sodium soy sauce to taste.
Best for: replenishing after a grueling workout.