I plan to start a running routine using the program listed here to improve my overall fitness.

What foods and – if applicable – supplements would be recommended for beginning runners? I.e. a "beginning runner's diet" program if possible, including what to eat when, and in what proportion.

My current daily diet is generally:

For breakfast: mostly Corn Flakes + milk;
Lunch: mostly Roti, fried fish, and assorted vegetables;
Dinner: -same as lunch-


Diet for Beginning Runners

by MelissaW, eHow Contributor

To get the most out of your running, it is important to eat right. If you're a new runner with a running schedule, it's best to match your eating habits with your running schedule. You can do this by eating smaller meals on those days, eating protein-rich foods, eating the right carbohydrates and drinking lots of water.

Eat Smaller Meals The best way to start a diet for new runners is to learn to eat smaller meals a few times throughout the day. That way you won't feel too full when it's time to run, yet you'll have the energy you need. Think of eating snacks throughout the day like celery and peanut butter, yogurt with granola and oatmeal with fruit.

List (snacks): celery, peanut butter, yogurt with granola and oatmeal with fruit

My choice: crackers with peanut butter

Carbohydrates are your friend when it comes to running. But, it's important to decide between healthy carbohydrates and the not so healthy ones. For healthy carbohydrates, stick with apples, bananas and carrots. Also try brown rice, oatmeal and lentil beans for healthy carbohydrates that will give you energy.

List: apples, bananas, carrots; brown rice, oatmeal and lentil beans

Protein is what helps make you feel fuller longer. That way you won't get any hunger pangs when you start on your new running schedule. Protein is also great because you usually have a feeling of fullness while eating a lot less calories. The best proteins for beginner runners include lean chicken and beef, fish, like salmon, and canned water-packed tuna.

List: lean chicken and beef, fish (e.g. salmon, canned water-packed tuna)

Drink Water
Like any plan to better your health, you'll want to drink at least eight oz. of water a day [my emphasis] when you start running. This will help give you energy, keep you hydrated and cleanse your body of any toxins. But, make sure not to drink too much water too fast before or after you begin running. This could give you stomach cramps or make you feel nauseous.

(Ref: http://www.ehow.com/facts_7251798_diet-beginning-runners.html)

My new diet:

Morning: Corn Flakes + diluted milk; two bananas
Lunch: Roti, chicken / fish, lentils, (additionally?: banana? if helpful)
Dinner: -same as above- (plus banana?)

Would this be a good diet program?

  • What does your current diet look like and why do you think that you need to alter it?
    – Baarn
    Commented Sep 29, 2012 at 15:50
  • For breakfast: mostly Corn Flakes + milk; lunch: mostly roti (bread), fried fish, and assorted vegetables; for dinner: -same as lunch-
    – UGPhysics
    Commented Sep 29, 2012 at 15:54
  • (I.e., I'm searching for a "beginning runner's diet" program if possible.)
    – UGPhysics
    Commented Sep 29, 2012 at 15:56
  • It would be great if you could add that information to your question. It would be good to your goals (eg weight-loss or improving overall fitness) and your current fitness level.
    – Baarn
    Commented Sep 29, 2012 at 16:00

2 Answers 2


I started doing sports (mostly bicycling and swimming) half a year ago and started running a few weeks ago. I did not change my diet for any of those activities. The only reason I changed my diet was to lose weight.
As long as you feel that you are living and eating healthy now, there is no real need to change your diet.
You should however pay attention to your drinking habits. You will lose more water due sweating and your body might need some more water for muscle build up.

I am not a big fan of supplements, but there are lacks on certain vitamins, minerals or trace elements in certain regions and you might want to ensure that your bodies supply on those is sufficient.

I would recommend you not to eat to heavy immediately before running, it can be very uncomfortable.


I don't do anything complex, I just try to eat as much fat as possible. Straight butter, several eggs with yolks, high fat yogurt, 6% if I have to settle, but 11% has been showing up more often in stores recently, quark if I'm in a country that sells it, a couple ounces whipping cream, fish oil... anything like that. That lets me last the whole day on one meal.

For rehydrating, a canteen with boullion is nice, as is coconut water, but regular water works nicely too. Lean towards drinking less rather than more, drinking too much just makes you feel like you're going to puke while you're running. Plus, recent research is showing that most people over-hydrate, leading to hyponatremia.

I don't spend much time running or training so I could fall under the beginner, but I've done full and half marathons without training for them, so it's something that works. My dad did the same thing for long distance runs in the army. Dean Karnazes eats similarly for when he runs as well, several pizzas loaded with as much as possible, that he'll eat while he's running. Beginner, intermediate, ultra-advanced - all the same idea for a runners diet.

Fat gives you a lot of energy in total, but it gets released slowly which is exactly what you need for running. On days that you're not running, eat however you need to to feel good - not fatigued, no aches, no problems with bowel movements, etc. That's going to be individual though, 7 billion diets for 7 billion people as Julie Daniluk would say.

  • The point is what kind of fats? Like nuts and oils? What else? Seems interesting
    – nilon
    Commented Jun 19, 2016 at 5:35

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