Fuelling the Distance: Mastering Intra-Run Nutrition for Peak Marathon Performance

BXR 101

Marathon Running

As the London Marathon approaches, runners are honing their prep, focusing on tapering, rest, and crucially, intra-run nutrition.

Paula Radcliffe remarks, "At big championships, it's not the fastest, but who gets it right." Marathon running challenges physical fitness, demanding health focus, diet, exercise, and strategy for success, especially intra-run nutrition for energy, performance, and experience. Here are six top tips for maintaining energy and vitality over 26.2 miles, useful for race day and long training runs:

1. Understand Your Needs: Know your body's carbohydrate needs to avoid depletion.
2. Start Early and Be Consistent: Fuel early and at regular intervals with 30-60g of carbs per hour.
3. Choose Easily Digestible Foods: Opt for gels, chews, and sports drinks for quick energy and avoid gastrointestinal issues.
4. Stay Hydrated: Balance water intake with electrolyte-rich sports drinks to prevent dehydration and maintain electrolyte balance.
5. Practice Makes Perfect: Experiment with nutrition during training to find what works for you.
6. Be Flexible and Listen to Your Body: Adapt your nutrition plan based on race day conditions and how you feel.

Mastering intra-run nutrition is essential for a successful marathon, involving understanding your body, early fuelling, digestible food choices, hydration, practice, and flexibility.