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Video:Should You Eat Before a Run?

with Kaytie Sproul

Eating before a run can lead to cramps or side stitches, but not eating before running can leave you low on energy. Here are some tips on whether or not to eat before a run.See Transcript

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Transcript:Should You Eat Before a Run?

Hi, I'm Kaytie Sproul here for About.com, and today we're going to talk about whether or not you should eat before you run, using information from About.com's Running and Jogging site.

Eat Small Snacks Before a Run

When beginning a run, you should feel neither starved nor stuffed. Before heading out your front door, consider the following: Eating immediately before a run may lead to cramping or side stitches, while running on an empty stomach could cause you to run out of energy.

Your best bet is to eat a snack or light meal about 1-1/2 to 2 hours before you start running. Meal or snack choices before your run should be something high in carbohydrates, and low in fat, fiber and/or protein.

Good and Bad Snacks to Eat Before a Run

Some examples of good pre-workout fuel include: a bagel with peanut butter; turkey and cheese on whole wheat bread; a banana and an energy bar; or a bowl of cold cereal with a cup of milk.

Stay away from rich, fatty, or high-fiber foods, as they may cause gastrointestinal distress during your run.

Tips for Eating Before a Morning Run

Just a tip: If you plan to go out for a run first thing in the morning, keep in mind that your body hasn't had any food for several hours. Your best bet is to get up a little earlier and have a small breakfast about an hour before you head out.

A small bowl of fruit or a piece of toast with some tea is perfect and will give you just enough energy to get through your run without weighing you down.

While it's a much-debated question among runners, it can't be denied that our bodies need fuel for peak performance during a run. Furthermore, making the proper food choices and eating at the right time is key to your success.

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