Adventure Race Nutrition Guide
Tackling your first Tough Mudder or a similarly epic event? Here’s how to eat through each stage of training.
ONE MONTH BEFORE
INCREASE YOUR CARBS
Your workouts will peak in intensity now, so you’ll need to reassess your ratios. “During this time, I would bump up your carb intake to around 60 percent,” says White. Your percentage of fat intake should stay at around 20 percent and your protein intake should be adjusted to 20 percent to compensate for the extra carbs.
GET YOUR VITAMINS
Tough training sessions can do a number on your immune system if you’re not careful. Sleep and hydration are key to avoid feeling worn down, and you should also pay attention to your vitamin intake. Vitamin C, B complexes, and omega-3s are all important for immunity, so make sure you’re hitting your recommended daily amount of each. “If I feel particularly worn down, I might supplement with a multivitamin,” says Thom, “but I’d rather get nutrients from food than a tablet.”
DO A RACE-DAY REHEARSAL
Now is the time to test out a race-day eating routine and see how your body responds, says White. Choose a weekend workout about three weeks before your event to experiment with the kind of light breakfast you’d have on race day—a protein shake, a banana with oatmeal, or a bowl of cereal with milk are solid choices. If you’re a coffee drinker, pay attention to how your usual amount makes you feel during your toughest workouts—if it drives up your anxiety or sends you running to the restroom, consider cutting back. And while you’re out training, don’t forget to eat and drink at regular intervals with the same snacks you’re planning to carry, whether it’s bananas, energy bars, or gels.